Book Review: The Wise Woman (Cullen Collection #17) by George MacDonald (three stars)
‘The princess was, at this time of her life, such a low-minded creature, that severity had greater influence over her than kindness.’
Not one of MacDonald’s best. First published in 1875. The accompanying notes suggest potential cross-fertilization with Mark Twain, who released his The Prince and the Pauper six years later. Twain’s story was much better. As is common for many MacDonald tales, preaching and explaining sometimes supersede storytelling.
‘People are so ready to think themselves changed when it is only their mood that is changed.’
The wise woman is a proto-Mary Poppins. She does and gets away with outrageous things. And they work. Moderns would call the Department of Social Services or police for child abuse.
‘Those who are most given to abuse can least endure it.’