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Fifty Years in the Fiction Factory: The Working Life of Herbert Allingham (1867-1936) Paperback – 19 Sep 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
Julia Jones (no relation!) inherited the Allingham family archive when Herbert’s youngest daughter, Joyce, died, and Julia has also written a biography of Margery - soon to be released as an e-book. The archive has proved to be a wonderful resource - a unique collection of documents giving us a window onto the world of ephemeral popular literature - the soap operas of our great grandparents’ generations.
Fifty Years in the Fiction Factory is a fascinating account of the growth, flowering and diminishing of mass-market literary culture - the penny and half-penny illustrated weekly papers that my grandmother used to refer to as ‘penny dreadfuls’, but read all the same. Most of the titles have now vanished, but Tit-Bits was still around when I was a child and my mother was still reading Women’s Weekly and My Weekly (in their modern transformations) when she died a few years ago.
This book tells a big part of the social history of Britain - how the weekly papers with their serials and stories both reflected and influenced a sector of society. They often had titles such as ‘A Woman Scorned’, or ‘A Mother Cast Out’, and plots that resemble silent movie classics like ‘The Perils of Pauline’. Like modern day soap operas, they were unashamedly formulaic with every episode ending on a cliff-hanger.Read more ›
I loved every word- it was an interesting and a delightful read and I would definitely recommend it to anyone!