ng-girl at a public-house in Shadwell. Never before had Valentine Jernam looked on so fair a woman. He had never been a student or admirer of the weaker sex. He had a vague kind of idea that there were women, and mermaids, and other dangerous creatures, lurking somewhere in this world, for the destruction of honest men; but beyond this he had very few ideas on the subject.
Other people were taking very little notice of the singer. The regular patrons of the 'Jolly Tar' were accustomed to her beauty and her singing, and thought very little about her. The girl was very quiet, very modest. She came and went under the care of the old blind pianist, whom she called her grandfather, and she seemed to shrink alike from observation or admiration.
She began to sing again presently.
She stood by the piano, facing the audience, calm as a statue, with her large black eyes looking straight before her. The old man listened to her eagerly, as he played, and nodded fond approval every now and then, as the full, rich
I don't think Mary Elizabeth Braddon ever wrote a bad novel! I would compare this one very favorably to her more well known Lady Audley's Secret and also to Henry Dunbar: Portrait Of An Outcast (which I thought was superior to Audley, quite honestly).
Lots of shady goings on in this one. There is plenty of dark, suspenseful intrigue at every turn. I could hardly put it down. I wish I could find authors who wrote like this today. Thank goodness she was so prolific!
A highly recommended read!
great read, but the reader sometimes feels depressed as all the good innocent characters keep getting murdered by plotting, scheming & wickedness. Evil prevails throughout but goodness prevails in the end.
Excellent Victorian sensation novel. It's full of intrigue and scheming, as a disinherited scoundrel and his mercenery friend plot to take over the family fortune. The novel also has interesting subplots involving secondary characters that are all connected to the main story. If you enjoyed " Lady Audley's Secret" or "The Eustace Diamonds", you'll enjoy this book.