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Roderick Random was published in 1748 to immediate acclaim, and established Smollett among the most popular of eighteenth-century novelists. Narrated by an unheroic, apparently rudderless hero named Random, Smollett's wildly energetic and entertaining novel is held together not least by the narrator's outrage and dismay. Although Roderick Random was first published anonymously, the secret of Smollett's authorship was soon discovered, with the result that many readers thought they recognized similarities between the life of the hero and that of his creator. Certainly Roderick Random's early years - disinherited and without wealth and influence - and his university career, apprenticeship and service as a naval surgeon, vividly reflect the experiences of the author. How Random learns to survive the fickle hand of fortune, recovers his long-lost father, marries his beloved Narcissa, and dispatches his enemies is the stuff, not of autobiography but of a novel which profoundly satirizes the moral chaosof its times. Dickens and Thackeray, among other great Victorians, applauded Smollett for his wit and invention, and in Roderick Random we enjoy the novel of a pioneer opening up the frontiers of fiction.
Roderick Random was published in 1748 to immediate acclaim, and established Smollett among the most popular of eighteenth-century novelists. Narrated by an unheroic, apparently rudderless hero named Random, Smollett's wildly energetic and entertaining novel is held together not least by the narrator's outrage and dismay. Although Roderick Random was first published anonymously, the secret of Smollett's authorship was soon discovered, with the result that many readers thought they recognized similarities between the life of the hero and that of his creator. Certainly Roderick Random's early years - disinherited and without wealth and influence - and his university career, apprenticeship and service as a naval surgeon, vividly reflect the experiences of the author. How Random learns to survive the fickle hand of fortune, recovers his long-lost father, marries his beloved Narcissa, and dispatches his enemies is the stuff, not of autobiography but of a novel which profoundly satirizes the moral chaosof its times. Dickens and Thackeray, among other great Victorians, applauded Smollett for his wit and invention, and in Roderick Random we enjoy the novel of a pioneer opening up the frontiers of fiction.
The Small House at Allington is the fifth novel in Anthony Trollope's series known as the "Chronicles of Barsetshire". It first appeared as a serial in the 1862 July to December edition of the Cornhill Magazine, and ended its run in the July to December edition of the following year. It was later published 1864 as a two volume novel. It enjoyed a revival in popularity in the early 1990s when the British prime minister, John Major, declared it as his favourite book.The Small House at Allington concerns the Dale family, who live in the "Small House", a dower house intended for the widowed mother (Dowager) of the owner of the estate. The landowner, in this instance, is the bachelor Squire of Allington, Christopher Dale. Dale's mother having died, he has allocated the Small House, rent free, to his widowed sister-in-law and her daughters Isabella ("Bell") and Lilian ("Lily").When the novel begins Bernard, the squire's nephew and heir, brings his friend Adolphus Crosbie to Allington and introduces him to the family. Crosbie is handsome and well-regarded in London society. Bell and Lily are impressed by Crosbie's charm and worldliness and Lily, the younger and wittier sister, labels him an Apollo.She and Crosbie grow increasingly intimate during his stay at Allington and before leaving he proposes to her. Mrs. Dale has no money for a dowry, but Crosbie thinks the squire might provide Lily with some fortune given that, in many ways, he treats her and Bell as if they were his daughters. When asked, the squire informs him this is not the case, leading Crosbie to reflect on how his salary as a clerk at the General Committee Office allows him to live comfortably as a bachelor but if he were to marry and support a family on his current income they would need to live very humbly. The engagement is made public and celebrated in Allington, but when Lily learns about his misunderstanding regarding her possible fortune she offers to break off the engagement with no hard feelings. Crosbie refuses, however, because he is impressed by this noble gesture and genuinely fond of Lily.

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