Putnam's Monthly Magazine
New York: G. P. Putnam & co., December 1868


  THE works of the Rev. JNO. S. C. ABBOTT are too well known and widely circulated to need description or criticism. We are not sure, however, that his place among American writers has as yet been clearly defined. We should be tempted to call him our most brilliant romance writer. We say this after carefully weighing the respective merits of the many claimants for the position; we have not forgotten "Uncle Tom's Cabin," "Norwood," or "St. Elmo," or "Wind and Whirlwind," but we consider that in dramatic conception of plot, in vivid description of scene, and in original creation of character, Mr. Abbott far surpasses the authors of those popular works, and his ingenuity in weaving into his narratives the events of history, and assigning to his heroes the names of historical characters, gives them an interest unknown to ordinary romances. We remember in days gone by to have been much fascinated by a work in the shape of a biography called the Life of "Napoleon Bonaparte." We preferred it to "Robinson Crusoe," we gladly abandoned in its favor the "Arabian Nights," and we still regard it as one of the most attractive books for young folks ever written. . . .