Isabella Alden's Book Descriptions

Victorian Era Evangelical Literature

Isabella Alden's Author Biography Page. Click Here.

"We mention first the Pansy Books. These lead naturally from the fact that Pansy is herself a leader. She inspires with her enthusiasm, she wins with her sympathy. Her characters are real live people, such as one meets every day. They have the trials, perplexities, joys of actual life, and Pansy brings them out of troubles such as fall to ordinary mortals in a way that helps, cheers, guides and builds up character."—Lothrop Publishing Company (1893).


Agatha's Unknown Way; A Story of Missionary Guidance by Pansy.

Whoever takes up this booklet will not be willing to lay it down until the singular adventures of Miss Hunter, daughter of a missionary in India, have been told to their surprising conclusion. There were two young ladies with the same surname, one of them being expected to address a missionary meeting and the other to give an exhibition of practice with 'clubs' and of 'poses.' The ladies got transposed to the amazement of the audiences and the ultimate benefit of the missionary treasury and the subsequent advantage of mission work, both home and foreign. The satire on the style in which missionary meetings are conducted in too many of the home churches is incisive and withering. This little book would make an excellent tract for the Women's Boards and would be read by many upon whom the effect would be something like that of Miss Hunter's burning words at the dinner table to young society loving Mr. Curtiss.—The Chinese Recorder and Missionary Journal (1899).

The untiring pen of Mrs. Alden has here busied itself with foreign mission work at the home end of the line. In this short story she sets forth in a very animated way the experience and the successes of a solitary girl in her efforts to awaken indifferent Christians to the needs of the benighted millions of the non-Christian world. The plot is quite novel-like and is ingeniously wrought out, and, if its outcome is too good to be true, it ought not so to be.—The Missionary Herald (1899).


An Hour with Miss Streator by Pansy.

Miss Streator is a type of the faithful, intelligent and sensitive primary class teacher in hundreds of Sunday-schools, whose efforts are little appreciated by church people generally, whose enthusiasm is misunderstood, and who have many hours in which they are tempted to abandon their labor of love in despair. To all such this intensely interesting little monograph will be a genuine inspiration, while to the thoughtless disparagers of faithful toilers it will bear most useful lessons.—The Publisher's Weekly (1884).

The introduction from the book says—"This simple sketch [for Sunday-school teachers] is, I think, full of encouragement, and will help us, I am sure, to go forth with more earnestness and faith, 'bearing precious seed,' and to 'wait,' if need be, 'in patience,' ''till the fair harvest come.'" One class led by Miss Streator is recorded for study. This Sunday-school class had many interruptions, distractions and problems. The children's lives were followed up years later and much more had happened than was observed.—Curiosmith (2013).

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As in a Mirror: A Story of Experiences by Pansy.

A strong and searching story in Pansy's well-known vein, as a teacher of practical righteousness.—Lothrop Publishing Company (1899).

In this story "Pansy" (Mrs. G. R. Alden) has departed somewhat from her usual way. She confines herself more strictly to one distinct ethical purpose and treats all her events and characters in their relation to it. John Stuart King, a young man of fortune and an author of distinction, starts out to learn by experience the life of a tramp, after the manner of Wyckoff. He soon, however, finds regular employment as Farmer Elliott's "hired man." Unfortunately for peace of conscience, Hindreth, the elder daughter, is a person of absolute sincerity, and by her subtle influence the little and great deceptions of her associates come to light. There is a lost will; there is much trifling with truth before the outcome; but secrets are laid bare at last, as the parties see themselves "as in a mirror." Despite some extravagant situations, it is one of authors best books.—The Literary World (1898).


The Chautauqua Girls at Home by Pansy. This is a longer version of Obeying the Call.

The further development of Christian character in the home and the Sunday-school.—Lothrop Publishing Company (1893).


Cunning Workmen by Pansy.

A story of rare interest and value to all interested in Sabbath-school work.—D. Lothrop & Company (1875).