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Winter Evening Tales   By: (1831-1919)

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WINTER EVENING TALES

by

AMELIA E. BARR

Author of "A Bow of Orange Ribbon," "Jan Vedder's Wife," "Friend Olivia," etc., etc.

Published by The Christian Herald Louis Klopsch, Proprietor, Bible House, New York.

1896

[Illustration]

PREFACE.

In these "Winter Evening Tales," Mrs. Barr has spread before her readers a feast that will afford the rarest enjoyment for many a leisure hour. There are few writers of the present day whose genius has such a luminous quality, and the spell of whose fancy carries us along so delightfully on its magic current. In these "Tales" each a perfect gem of romance, in an artistic setting the author has touched many phases of human nature. Some of the stories in the collection sparkle with the spirit of mirth; others give glimpses of the sadder side of life. Throughout all, there are found that broad sympathy and intense humanity that characterize every page that comes from her pen. Her men and women are creatures of real flesh and blood, not deftly handled puppets; they move, act and speak spontaneously, with the full vigor of life and the strong purpose of persons who are participating in a real drama, and not a make believe.

Mrs. Barr has the rare gift of writing from heart to heart. She unconsciously infuses into her readers a liberal share of the enthusiasm that moves the people of her creative imagination. One cannot read any of her books without feeling more than a spectator's interest; we are, for the moment, actual sharers in the joys and the sorrows, the misfortunes and the triumphs of the men and women to whom she introduces us. Our sympathy, our love, our admiration, are kindled by their noble and attractive qualities; our mirth is excited by the absurd and incongruous aspects of some characters, and our hearts are thrilled by the frequent revelation of such goodness and true human feeling as can only come from pure and noble souls.

In these "Tales," as in many of her other works, humble life has held a strong attraction for Mrs. Barr's pen. Her mind and heart naturally turn in this direction; and although her wonderful talent, within its wide range, deals with all stations and conditions of life, she has but little relish for the gilded artificialities of society, and a strong love for those whose condition makes life for them something real and earnest and definite of purpose. For this reason, among many others, the Christian people of America have a hearty admiration for Mrs. Barr and her work, knowing it to be not only of surpassing human interest, but spiritually helpful and inspiring, with an influence that makes for morality and good living, in the highest sense in which a Christian understands the term.

G.H. SANDISON.

New York, 1896.

CONTENTS.

"Cash;" a Problem of Profit and Loss Franz Müller's Wife The Voice at Midnight Six and Half a Dozen The Story of David Morrison Tom Duffan's Daughter The Harvest of the Wind The Seven Wise Men of Preston Margaret Sinclair's Silent Money Just What He Deserved An Only Offer Two Fair Deceivers The Two Mr. Smiths The Story of Mary Neil The Heiress of Kurston Chace Only This Once Petralto's Love Story

Winter Evening Tales.

CASH.

A PROBLEM OF PROFIT AND LOSS, WORKED BY DAVID LOCKERBY.

PART I.

"Gold may be dear bought."

A narrow street with dreadful "wynds" and "vennels" running back from it was the High street of Glasgow at the time my story opens. And yet, though dirty, noisy and overcrowded with sin and suffering, a flavor of old time royalty and romance lingered amid its vulgar surroundings; and midway of its squalid length a quaint brown frontage kept behind it noble halls of learning, and pleasant old courts full of the "air of still delightful studies."

From this building came out two young men in academic costume. One of them set his face dourly against the clammy fog and drizzling rain, breathing it boldly, as if it was the balmiest oxygen; the other, shuddering, drew his scarlet toga around him and said, mournfully, "Ech, Davie, the High street is an ill furlong on the de'il's road! I never tread it, but I think o' the weary, weary miles atween it and Eden... Continue reading book >>




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