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Fanny by Gaslight Paperback – 27 Aug 1981

5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd; New edition edition (27 Aug. 1981)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140060057
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140060058
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 2.5 x 12.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 729,026 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Fanny by Gaslight

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dr. R. Brandon TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 23 Jun. 2014
Format: Paperback
Although first published by Constable in 1940 this tale of Victorian social habits and locations, with one or two deliberate exceptions, utilises authentic detail. The story is told by the heroine, Fanny Hooper, in the 1930s but relates to her life in the 19th century and is a tale of Victorian life as lived on the edge of society. The author and Managing Director of Constable & Co., Michael Sadlier, was a bibliophile and expert on Victorian life and literature and took great pains to ensure accurate detail within this fictional narrative.
The story recounts the life of Fanny Hooper, born out of wedlock and brought up by her mother and step-father in a central London public house which also provides rather more murky services. A disaster befalls this existence and she is rescued by her father and provided with a place in service but eventually this too falls through and Fanny must then earn a living in one of the rather more disreputable establishments that thrived in Victorian times. There are more twists and turns in the narrative that I will not relate, but these provide the author with plenty of opportunity for convincing period description.
This love story, for that is what it is, is well written, very graphic and captures convincingly the feeling of a Victorian adventure. The characters are well drawn and memorable and behave in highly credible ways. My single criticism is that at times Sadlier lets his descriptive passages and discursions go on for too long and this tends to seriously slow the forward momentum of the tale. I might also comment that the demure cover of the paperback is completely unsuitable and gives an entirely wrong impression of the contents.
A good story, if a little slow at times, which will be attractive to those fond of well told Victorian tales.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Marja Nicolson on 4 Mar. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I first read the book about 50 years ago, and loved it. Sadleir's portrayal of the underbelly of Victorian London has the ring of truth, but beyond that, his picture of each of his characters has similar validity. His people live, breathe and, above all, develop in response to their experiences. That is why the book lends itself so particularly to television; I believe there have been two versions. The author's characterisation is superb, and his descriptive talent applies equally to places, whether he writes about the London of he 1870s in which his heroine grows up, or the sleepy rural backwater to which she retreats at the end of her life. All in all, a most satisfying read, warmly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Nic.E on 30 Jun. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Ordered for a friend who had lost her copy. Greatly enjoyed again.
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By mrs jane manners on 4 Nov. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Mum loved this book. Took her right back to her earlier years
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Docholliday on 18 Dec. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Written by a Barnsley man who was an authority on Trollope.
An observation of late 19th century class devision and inequality through the eyes an illegitimate daughter of an aristocrat as she makes her way amongst various levels of society of the time.
Not the usual material I read. Enjoyed it for a change. I found the characters and their situations well written and engaging.
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