The Children of Húrin

In his iconoclastic Autobiography (1883), Anthony Trollope recalled speculating, during a sea voyage to Australia, about the fate of his unpublished manuscripts if his ship were to founder en route:
I do not know how many posthumous books the public would receive from an author’s pen, one after the other, when the author had long been buried. That one novel should be accepted, as was the case with Kenelm Chillingly, I can understand; but I fear that the numbers appearing month after month, and year after year—when the man who wrote them was all but forgotten—would weary the British public.
Trollope may be too sanguine here, for the public no longer accepts even Kenelm Chillingly (Edward Bulwer-Lytton’s last novel), which has vanished from the memory of all but specialists in minor Victoriana.


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