Originally posted on Dr. Doyle's Editorial and Critique Services:
Some time back, I posted a tasting flight of shorter works by important authors, in the interest of giving readers a way to decide whether or not they liked a particular author enough to go on and tackle one of that author’s signature doorstop volumes. Now, as a follow-up to that round, here’s another quartet of shorter pieces by authors of important longer works.
Henry Fielding – Joseph Andrews. Tom Jones is the doorstop (and well worth reading for its own sake); Joseph Andrews is the short one, written in response to that other blockbuster of the eighteenth century, Samuel Richardson’s Pamela. Richardson’s novel featured a virtuous maidservant who attracts the lustful attention of her employer, Squire B, possibly the world’s most incompetent rake. He tries everything, including abduction and a fake marriage, but never works himself up to doing the actual deed; meanwhile, Pamela steadfastly holds…
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