E. Bulwer Lytton My Novel (1855)

'Among the most surprising instances of the immense revolution which has taken place of late years in popular literature, are the cheap publications of Messrs. Routledge and Sons ... Their books are never above and never below the standard of public taste.' (The Times).

My Novel

Routledge's Railway Library

The Railway Library was at its best during the 1850s and 1860s, when 120 authors from Jane Austen to Edmund Yates were represented in the series. In 1853 Routledge agreed to pay Edward Bulwer Lytton a total of £20,000 over ten years for the right to issue cheap editions of his works. It was a shrewd investment: 26,000 copies of My Novel were sold within the first year, with annual reprintings of 2,000 copies throughout the life of the contract. The covers for Bulwer Lytton's novels were amongst Edmund Evans's earliest work for Routledge.