ing wink to the porter, which gentleman, in the full possession of an unlooked-- for eighteenpence, felt so wealthy that he could afford to be supercilious.
"What class, miss?" he said, reaching his hand to a trunk.
"Third, if you please," was the reply.
"Ah! there'll be something extry to pay for luggidge: third-class passengers ain't allowed two big boxes like these here.--Why didn't you put 'em down, Dick?"
"Ain't got half paid for what I did do," said the driver gruffly. "People as can't afford to pay for flies oughter ride in carts. Mind that 'ere lamp!"
Certainly a lamp had a very narrow escape, as trunk number one was brought to the ground with a crash, the second one being treated almost as mercilessly, but without a word from their owner, who quietly raising her veil and displaying a sweet sad face, now went to the pigeon-hole, regardless of the leering stare bestowed upon her by the exquisite, who had sauntered back into the booking-office.
Fenn can tell a tale as, for instance, Diamond Dyke proves. In this case he attempts what might be termed a post-Regency romance. The plot is quite suitable for the genre, the characters of interest and generally well-drawn. The writing is often excellent, even verging on lyrical at times.
But there is so much of it! Were this book two thirds as long, and were the melodramatic passages cut even further I'd call it excellent. As it is, determination is required to read it to the end.
Too bad. With a flint-eyed editor it would have been great.