First Page of the Preface to the  Clarke, Beeton, & Co. Reprint, Version 1
I AM glad to be asked to write a preface to this book—to a cheap edition of it I am glad it is a cheap edition. I wish it were even cheaper, simply because I should like the volume to have a wide, wide world circulation. It is a charming book. It has the sweetest charm of goodness about it—the highest style of goodness, godliness. It has a genuine truthfulness—it is true to nature, and has a delightful naturalness. It is true to man, for it sets forth sound principles, and contains no exaggerated sentiments. It is true to God, for it is true to his Christ, and to his Bible. It is clearly evident that the writer knows God in Christ, fears and loves Him, knows that one thing' is needful, has herself chosen that good part, and desires that all her readers should do the same. It is a work of fiction, but there is more of truth in such pages than in many books which are not deemed fictitious. In them the mere circumstances may be true, but the views of the writer false and wrong; in this the circumstances may be fictitious, but they embody and illustrate the most important truths.
In these days of many books and many readers, it is refreshing to meet with such a book, and cheering to know that it has many readers. The writer has all the talent of a high order of mind ; she has an extraordinary knowledge of human nature, and is a close and accurate observer of character. Her personages are admirably conceived and exqui-
Collection of Jessica DeSpain
The Wide, Wide World Digital Edition by Jessica DeSpain, Jennifer Brady, Melissa White, and Jill Anderson is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.