“The Busiest Man in England”

Grant Allen and the Writing Trade, 1875–1900

  • Authors
  • Peter Morton

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xviii
  2. Peter Morton
    Pages 1-11
  3. Peter Morton
    Pages 13-26
  4. Peter Morton
    Pages 27-43
  5. Peter Morton
    Pages 45-71
  6. Peter Morton
    Pages 95-110
  7. Peter Morton
    Pages 111-124
  8. Peter Morton
    Pages 125-132
  9. Peter Morton
    Pages 133-145
  10. Peter Morton
    Pages 147-171
  11. Peter Morton
    Pages 173-185
  12. Peter Morton
    Pages 187-196
  13. Back Matter
    Pages 197-251

About this book


This book is a critical biography of Grant Allen, (1848-1899), the first for a century, based on all the surviving primary sources. Born in Kingston, Ontario, into a cultured and affluent family, Allen was educated in France and England. A mysterious marriage while he was an Oxford undergraduate wrecked his academic career and radicalized his views on sexual and marital questions, as did a three-year teaching stint in Jamaica. Despite his lifelong ill health and short life, Allen was a writer of extraordinary productivity and range. About half - more than 30 books and many hundreds of articles - reflects interests which ran from Darwinian biology to cultural travel guides. His prosperity, however, was underpinned by fiction; more than 30 novels, including The Woman Who Did , which has attracted much recent attention from feminist critics and historians. The Better End of Grub Street uses Allen's career to examine the role and status of the freelance author/journalist in the late-Victorian period. Allen's career delineates what it took to succeed in this notoriously tough profession.


fiction novel Victorian era

Bibliographic information