'… Abberley’s study successfully explores his central thesis without overburdening the reader with jargon and over-arguing; instead, he allows the cornucopia of texts he explores to speak for themselves.'
Michael R. Page
Source: The Review of English Studies
'English Fiction and the Evolution of Language presents scientific philological and evolutionary thinking in a lucid and accessible way, persuasively demonstrating how actively writers of fiction engaged with these discourses and grappled with resolving their contradictions. … This is a rich close investigation of the relationship between fiction and language evolution forming a valuable and worthy addition to the scholarship of nineteenth-century literature and science.'
Source: Journal of Victorian Culture
'… this is a work of admirably wide-ranging scholarship that should generate further interest in a fascinating subject and will certainly serve as a useful foundation for more specialized work in the future.'
Source: Review 19 (www.nbol-19.org)
'Abberley's book is a slim one (four chapters and 175 pages of text), but it is unusually wide-ranging and comprehensive, citing an astonishing number of novels and stories, and drawing together material from both familiar and obscure sources. Abberley packs a great deal into every paragraph: his readings are rich and condensed, and on every page he demonstrates the value of the twenty-first-century critic's awareness of the language concerns of the Victorian and Edwardian periods. This is a book to be absorbed and used.'
Donald S. Hair
Source: Victorian Studies