chapter  43
F. W. Farrar, Contemporary Review, September 1889
Pages 5

It is not my purpose to review the novel ofwhich the title stands at the head of this paper. I have never been a Reviewer. I have none of the gifts which enable so many Reviewers with consummate skill to be blind to great merits and lynx-eyed to minute errors and misprints. The merits of any book worthy of the name invariably 100m larger before me than its faults. If it is animated by a noble and serious purpose I read it with the sole desire to gain what I can from it, and I leave its errors and limitations to be pointed out by others, who will, perhaps, revel in the sense of their own superiority in the contemptuous condemnation ofbooks ofwhich they could not have written a single page. So many of the purest and grandest works ofgenius with which the world has ever been enriched have been trampled upon by anonymous arrogance, and have continued uninjured their beneficent influence, still 'adding sunlight to daylight by making the happy happier;' and so many books, radically useless and unworthy, have been heralded into life with flourishes of trumpets and indiscriminate praise -only to die before the year is over-that I for one will have as little as possible to do with praising books which are foredoomed to failure, or sneering at books which, whatever may be their imperfections, fulfil in any measure the aims which the authors have set before them-

selves, and may increase the knowledge or hallo\v the aspirations of those who read them.