chapter  6
1 Pages

Unsigned review, Spectator, 18 July 1840

A collection of clever and smart papers, of the better kind of light magazine articles, and half of which have already appeared in periodicals; consisting of sketches and stories descriptive of Parisian life and character, with discursive remarks on French novels, dramas, and pictures. The flippant touch-and-go style of magazine-writing, where commonplace labours to appear dashing and brilliant, is not fit, however, for continuous reading: hence it may be that the sarcastic humour of this writer appears occasionally forced, and his descriptions exaggerated. This broad caricature style is suitable to the characteristics of demireps and gamblers, amongst whom he is most at home. His vein of humour is essentially satirical; it is too severe and biting to be pleasant. His etchings are masterly, and distinguished by grotesque drollery, of a caustic kind, that is shown to advantage in hitting off the expression of villains and their dupes.