Page:Authors daughter v1.djvu/276

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272
THE AUTHOR'S DAUGHTER.

that it is not good for young people to read too many novels and poems, or rather to read nothing else, which we have been doing for these last six months. Mamma said that it did her harm when she was young; and when I have been indulging myself lately I have felt some compunction; but it is very pleasant. Still, though I go on with the characters, I do not feel as if I were one of them; I am not clever enough to be Jane Eyre, or handsome enough to be any other novel heroine. No; I am Amy Staunton all the time."

"That's what I ought to feel, but I do not," asid Allan; "so I think they hurt me more than they hurt you."

"But do not they give you some idea of life and manners out of your own circle?" asked Amy.

"Yas,” said Allen, thoughtfully, "some of them do. They carry me into the past, and into the remote as I have never been carried before; but then I have no confidence in their being true."

"And is it not better that we should take an interest in imaginary people than only in our daily work? I am speaking to account for my own feelings, and perhaps to defend them, but not to advise you, Allan,” said Amy, musingly. "For instance, if I had continued to live in London