Penny dreadfuls

8 July 2004 at 11:36 Leave a comment

I’ve recently been enjoying penny dreadfuls, aka dime novels.  I’de heard of them but hadn’t had a chance to try them.  I find them a funny, fun version of the classic mystery tale.

G.K. Chesterton had to hold forth on them:

“And with a hypocrisy so ludicrous as to be almost unparalleled in history, we rate the gutter-boys for their immorality at the very time that we are discussing (with equivocal German professors) whether morality is valid at all. At the very instant that we curse the Penny Dreadful for encouraging thefts upon property, we canvass the proposition that all property is theft.”

“Literature and fiction are two entirely different things. Literature is a luxury; fiction is a necessity. A work of art can hardly be too short, for its climax is its merit. A story can never be too long, for its conclusion is merely to be deplored, like the last halfpenny or the last pipelight.”

And here’s a Penny Dreadful for you:

Nick Carter, Detective: The Solution of a Remarkable Case

I think in order to enjoy it to it’s fullest potential, it would help to be a 10-year-old boy in 1885, but it was fun.

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Entry filed under: reading.

A Brace of Bicycles Che Chuoi

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What I’ve been reading:

  • James Boswell, The Life of Samuel Johnson, L.L.D. (London, 14 King William Street, Strand: William P. Nimmo, 1876). 3 years ago
  • Marsilio Ficino, Letters of Marsilio Ficino, v. 3, trans. Language Dept. School of Economic Science, London (New York: Gingko Press, 1985). 4 years ago
  • Italo Calvino, Six Memos for the Next Millennium (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1988). 4 years ago
  • Stephanie Kallos, Broken for You (New York: Grove Press, 2004). 4 years ago
  • Marsilio Ficino, Letters of Marsilio Ficino, v. 2, trans. Language Dept. School of Economic Science, London (New York: Gingko Press, 1985) 4 years ago

T. Anderson Painter

I am a misanthrope. No one ever believes me, but this seems to prove my point.

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