Writing by numbers : Trollope's serial fiction /
Mary Hamer.
Cambridge [Cambridgeshire] ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 1987.
xiii, 199 p.
More Details
Cambridge [Cambridgeshire] ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 1987.
general note
Includes index.
catalogue key
Bibliography: p. 191-194.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1987-12:
Hamer seeks to demonstrate that serial publication-far from being a constrictive force in the composition of Trollope's novels-served to liberate his imagination. In a lengthy introduction, the author lays out the historical background of the rise of serial publication. Treating Trollope's three-decker novels written before he embarked on serial publication, Hamer argues that they are afflicted by a ``mechanical and primitive'' structural unity: she includes here Barchester Towers. She agrees with Peter K. Garrett (The Victorian Multiplot Novel, CH, May '80) that the multiplot novel became interesting in the 19th-century when subplots began to subvert the main narrative rather than echo it. Framley Parsonage, Trollope's first serial novel, is a watershed work for Hamer because it begins the liberation of Trollope's imaginative powers. Hamer concludes that Trollope improves as a novelist after Framley because he dramatizes more and comments less, because he discloses his central character through the multiple perspective of figures encountered as the plot unfolds. Novels discussed in detail include: Orley Farm, The Small House at Allington, Can You Forgive Her?, The Claverings, Phineas Finn, and The Last Chronicle of Barset. Well within the grasp of the general reader, the technical nature and prose of the book seem aimed at a more specialized audience. Recommended for university libraries.-R. Ducharme, Mount Saint Mary's College
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, December 1987
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