The agreeable eye

an eudæmonistarchives


The houses between which the action uncertainly scuttles have the ungenial impersonality of the re-used backdrop, and at the corner of the garden one feels the outlines of a gazebo, lattice white, meant to suggest gentility to less subtle minds. Finally, it is shocking – so to fall off as precisely to say that this person loves that one. But the thing is done: the child is dead and she killed it, with motives so explicitly brought forth that the reader quavers between amusement and disgust. Above all, the absolute lack of anyone hanging fire, even when it would do them good. It seems not at all like Henry James, not even a dramatic Henry James, but perhaps some hitherto unknown second cousin (perhaps called Clarence) or failing that, Wilkie Collins.


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