Advert for Walter Brown, book seller
Medium: Print on paper
Newly published novels were expensive in the 19th century, and in general were only read by the upper and middle classes. Even then, many of those readers belonged to subscription libraries and never actually bought the books. Novels were usually published in three volumes, each one costing about 31 shillings. This was more than you would have paid for a bicycle or a cloth dress. Very often beautifully bound, books were treasured items.
Booksellers such as Walter Brown would also have loaned books out for a small fee.