8 AUGUST 1885, Page 24

Nell Fraser; or, Thorough Respectability. By E. Iles. 3 vole.

(J. and R. Maxwell.)—The relatives to whom Nell Fraser is sent are exactly the uncle and aunt of fiction, personages who, as Miss Yonge

complains in her last novel, have taken the unpopular place of the stepmother of ancient literature. They are inconceivably disagreeable and mean, and the poor girl is driven into marrying a husband who is not much better. Husbands of this kind are happily not long-lived, at least in the atmosphere of fiction. The right man, unaccountably snubbed and neglected before, tarns up at the right time, and all goes well. The story, as a whole, is of the most commonplace kind, and not relieved by any force or grace of style. But it is loosely printed, and in large type, and the number of pages in the three volumes does not amount to 800.