The Definite Object is definitely second-rate

  The American setting of The Definite Object allows Jeffery Farnol to diversity his usual cast of minor characters with immigrants, gangsters, slumlords, and professional pugilists. The variety adds complexity to the novel without noticeably changing Farnol’s usual story line. The Definite Object: A Romance of New York by Jeffery Farnol 1917 bestseller #9. Project […]

Orphan Sandy is best left alone

Novels about orphans who won fame, fortune, and family were a staple of popular literature of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Alice Hegan Rice’s Sandy is an example of the deserving orphan novel at its worst. Sandy by Alice Hegan Rice New York: The Century Co., 1905. Project Gutenberg ebook # 14079. 1905 bestseller […]

Poor Wise Man makes romantic thriller from 1920’s economic upheaval

Mary Roberts Rinehart, noted for her mysteries, hit the bestseller list in 1921 with a romantic thriller. A Poor Wise Man is an exciting read that still leaves readers with plenty to think about. Lily Cardew, heir to the Cardew steel fortune, is home after a year of war work in Ohio. Labor trouble is […]

Peder Victorious Suffers Fractures

In Peder Victorious, O. E. Rolvaag looks at the second generation of Norwegian pioneers who broke the Dakota prairies to the plow. Peder Victorious Holm and his siblings think of themselves as Americans. Their mother, Beret Holm, still regards herself as Norwegian. She wishes her children to speak, read, think in Norwegian; have only Norwegian […]