Last Updated on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 202
New Grub Street by George Gissing focuses on a fictitious literary society in London. The book is set in the 1880s. Many people in Grub Street write for a living. The story revolves around Edwin Reardon, a budding writer, and the people he interacts with, such as Jasper Milvain. Jasper has the dreams of becoming a journalist. Another character highlighted in the book is Alfred Yule, a literary critic.
Edwin Reardon is interested in writing novels and does not believe in using his talent solely to make money. He is a family man who is facing financial hardship. He works hard to become a successful writer and is afraid of disappointing his wife. On the other hand, Jasper Milvain is a promising writer who wants to be a journalist. He believes that writing can make him rich. Jasper meets Alfred Yule in one of his family visits in the country. Alfred is an established author but is not happy with his life. Milvain is fascinated by Marian, Alfred’s daughter, but is hesitant to get into a relationship with her because she lacks money. He makes his feelings known to her and implies that money is his most important priority in life.