I shall be looking at a lot of the old magazines we inherited over the weeks to come, before either rehoming them or packing them away for any future owners of Les Fragnes.
I told you about Micheline recently. I’ve since come across some more serialised novels. These came with La Mode Pratique in 1907 and 1908, twelve pages at a time. The printing layout is ingenious so that once you’ve made two cuts, you end up with three sets of double page spreads. Place on top of each other you get your twelve-page section.
No frills, just a good story. And they were good stories. The ones I have, sadly none of them in entirety, are Le Sequin d’Or by Anne Osmont (2 August 1872 – 13 May 1953). She was a very interesting writer. She was a symbolist, a member of the group that were reacting against the romantic and nature authors that had gone before them. Symbolist literature works by suggestion of images rather than actual facts and description. Anne Osmont was a clairvoyant and fascinated by the occult. She was a friend of GK Chesterton, and translated some of his work in to French. I haven’t found this book anywhere on the Net, only some essays by Anne, so I can’t tell you anything about the story. I haven’t delved into the book yet.
Next up is L’enfant Millionaire (The Millionaire Baby, written in 1905) by Anna Katherina Green (11 November 1846 – 11 April 1935). She was a very well known American author, famous for her well plotted legally accurate stories, according to Wikipedia. She wrote over 40 novels after not making it as a Romantic poet. She was apparently very anti-women’s suffrage. Green is credited with inventing the ‘series detective’ and popularising detective fiction. Her main character was detective Ebenezer Gryce of the New York police Force, and occasionally he had a civilian sidekick, the spinster Amelia Butterworth, a Miss Marple prototype. Green also came up with the first amateur female detective, Violet Strange, a debutante. I’ve got a free copy of The Millionaire Baby for my Kindle so I’ll read and at some point fill you in on the story.
And then we have La Tabatière du Cardinal (The Cardinal’s Snuff Box) by Henry Harland (1 March 1861 – 20 December 1905). Born in Brooklyn Harland moved to London and joined the aesthetics movement. He was a very popular author in his time, and died prematurely from TB. I’ve got this book on my Kindle too. The first few pages are very enjoyable.
So – La Mode Pratique was offering its readers top quality, contemporary and popular literature which I imagine was a very good promotional idea.
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