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The Lamplighter

4.02  ·  Rating Details ·  683 Ratings  ·  60 Reviews
A female Bildungsroman, The Lamplighter tells the story of Gertrude Flint, an abandoned and mistreated orphan rescued at the age of eight by Trueman Flint, a lamplighter, from her abusive guardian, Nan Grant.
Paperback, 480 pages
Published October 1st 1988 by Rutgers University Press (first published 1854)
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Nov 23, 2011 Jason rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Lamplighter, one of the more popular books in the country when it was released in the mid-19th century, is an engaging story of a undisciplined and unloved girl who has her life transformed, by Providence, through the love of strangers, whose ties to her are greater than anyone initially suspects. It is well told and well written. It does start off slow, but moves fast after the girl -- Gertrude, or "Gerty" -- grows up. The last half of the book is, in particular, hard to put down. The "surp ...more
Feb 13, 2013 Hannah rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful book! I read the Lamplighter edition first, then found the original unedited version later. It was like reading an entirely different book to read the full version...about a third of the book was taken out in the edited version. There were a few plot gaps in the edited version that aren't in the complete edition. I absolutely love this!
Victoria Lynn
Another one of my favorite period pieces. I have read it numerous times and listened to it read aloud. This story is one I will treasure always and hope to pass on to my children someday.
Wayne S.
Jan 21, 2014 Wayne S. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When the story opens, Gertrude or Gerty is an eight-year-old orphaned girl in Boston, MA, who is being raised by a mean widow named Nan Grant, whose late husband Ben was a sailor and whose son Stephen is a scoundrel. Gerty finds a kitten to be her pet, but Nan kills it and then throws the sick little Gerty out on the street in the snow. The girl is adopted by the kindly old local lamplighter, Trueman, or True, Flint. He later becomes ill, and Gerty nurses him until he dies. The girl then moves i ...more
Oct 14, 2013 Ginger rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested it this type novel
Recommended to Ginger by: no one
Shelves: fiction, audio
Truly enjoyed. The Lamplighter is about an orphan and her life. It tells of events bad and good that lead to different outcomes in her life and how she overcomes. I listened by audio and found myself ready for the next traveling time to be able to listen again. For me personally the first chapter was a heart wrenching chapter.
Jun 23, 2007 Sara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is really the 19th century American sentimental novel at its best. It's not deep, it's not profound, and it's not even all that believable, but I would definitely put it into the "snuggly" category, and those are my favorites.
Mar 07, 2016 Nata rated it liked it
O poveste interesantă despre credință, despre oamenii cu sufletul mare, despre viața unei orfane. Despre cum este abandonată, umilită de unii și iubită necondiționat de alții. Despre iertare, regăsire, reuniune, împlinire și fericire, până la urmă.
Gordon Gravley
Mar 03, 2016 Gordon Gravley rated it liked it
A nice, Dickens-esque read. I particularly enjoyed the first half and the relationship between the old lamplighter and the poor girl, Gerty, who he takes under his care. The second half settled into a rather slow romance.
Feb 21, 2017 Nancy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: classics
Written so intelligently, it made me desirous of improving my simple speech and mind. There were also lessons in self control over emotions, cultivating and maintaining a pure heart and motives; overlooking unfair treatment and harboring no ill will toward those who inflict unkindness towards oneself and others.
Theresa Stinnett
Jan 07, 2017 Theresa Stinnett rated it really liked it
I almost loved this book. But be aware, it is very dramatic. The Lamplighter is a rather sweet story about, Gerty, a little orphan girl who is rescued from her cruel guardian, Nan Grant, by a kind lamplighter named Truman Flint. As the story progresses, Gerty changes from a tempramental and resentful child into a lovely, Christian lady who has learned through experience, suffering and the teachings of a sweet, blind woman, to control her own nature and submit herself to God. It is a story about ...more
Mar 27, 2014 Saara rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
I was drawn to borrow this novel solely on the basis of its appearance; I harbour a helpless attraction towards old books. The title also added to my intrigue, certainly, but I had no idea what I was in for: a deeply religious sentimental novel. It was clear from the very first chapter that there was going to be much praise of the heavenly Father.

I finished it anyway.

What we have here is the tale of an orphan child, Gertrude, in the beginning cruelly left to fend for herself by the person who ha
A precious book! The book contains little pockets of wisdom, love, and basically Christ! Though, if the reader were to skip over these, than this book would appear to be works righteousness.
Now, the book was a wee bit sappy when it came to the romance, but it wasn't like a Hallmark movie, where a ton of people die. The writing style was not favorite, but that is not a fault to the author. And, whether it was supposed to be or not, it was pretty predictable. Really, I predicted it perfectly.
Nov 24, 2015 Patsy rated it it was amazing
A good wholesome classic, there were 70,000 copies sold in the first year that the book was published in 1854. This was Maria Susanna Cummins (1827-1866) first novel. This story was set in the 1800's in Boston, MA.

Gertrude Flint 'Gerty', An 8 year old orphan girl; is raised by an unkind widow. For punishment Nan Grant, the widow throws the sick little girl into the cold snow outside. The lamplighter finds Gerty and takes her home with him. Mr. Trueman Flint 'True' raised Gerty who had never bee
Nov 18, 2010 Kacie rated it liked it
So, I had to pick a novel to read for my Early American Lit class, which is how I ended up reading The Lamplighter. My initial thoughts were that I was going to completely hate it, because honestly, I don't really enjoy classic literature. I find most of it boring and monotonous, and based on the short stuff I'd already had to read for the class, the idea of an early American novel just seemed like torture. So, imagine my surprised when I started reading and didn't completely hate it. Yes, the f ...more
Feb 02, 2011 Becca rated it liked it
This would be one of the better books by Lamplighter Publishing that I have encountered. A well-written, compelling story with good "morals" but not an undue reliance upon them or overt preaching. In many ways it is a Cinderella story. A girl comes from abuse, starvation, and rags to riches, love and prosperity. She finds the family she never had through some clever twists in the story line and unexpected outcomes. While the plot line is rather basic, simple, and predictable, as are the characte ...more
Gironzolando per la rete alla ricerca di nuove letture, ho incontrato questo libro: vediamo un po' – mi sono chiesta – ma era proprio quello che a dodici anni avevo preso in prestito dalla biblioteca della scuola per divorarlo in pochi giorni? Il titolo italiano era 'La figlia del lampionaio', ed era pieno di emozionanti colpi di scena…
Ebbene, io, che sono sempre stata favorevole alle 'edizioni integrali', devo ammettere che la mano gentile che aveva risparmiato alla ragazzina di allora le decin
Wendy Webber
Dec 14, 2013 Wendy Webber rated it really liked it
A nice historic fiction set in the mid 1800's in Boston, US. Follows the life of a young orphan who when taken in by an elderly lamplighter starts on a journey of discovering the great lighter of lamps and development of christian character including self-control. Once we get to the latter part of the book, we see a lovely balance of gentleness of character while also standing up for doing the right thing when others chose to placate or submit to bullies. Her life is hard and there are many sorr ...more
Dayna Smith
Another in the wonderful Rare Collector's series by Lamplighter Publishing, indeed the book which gave the company its name. This story was written in the 1800s when men had to light the street lamps in cities around the country. True, a old lamplighter, takes in an abused orphan named Gerty. His kindness and love give little Gerty a new lease on life. She finds herself to be more than she ever imagined she could be. A wonderful tale of Christian compassion and love, even in times of despair and ...more
Jan 02, 2010 Felicity rated it did not like it
OK, OK, so I had to read this for my dissertation, so is it really fair to review it?? But honestly, I just wanted to warn anyone who, for some peculiar reason, decides they want to waste precious hours of their life reading this is bad. Turgid. No wonder Nathaniel Hawthorne was so annoyed that this book outsold his own. Give me "The Scarlet Letter" any day. This book is 400 pages long. I skipped fifty at some stage, and it didn't make a whit of difference. The plot, if you can call it ...more
Jul 12, 2014 Anna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 18, 2011 Marilyn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic, literature
I'm not sure if this is the edition that I have but it is as close as I can come. My book was my Dad's. He has his name and the year 1926 written in it. There are 246 pages. The print is quite small. I never realized this was a top selling book in it's time. Only after reading the reviews here did I find that out.

I read it as a youngster and mainly because it had been my Dad's and I wanted to read the same books as he had. I remember very little about it.
Carol James maguire
Jan 10, 2014 Carol James maguire rated it really liked it
What an amazing book....I truly loved it. I cannot believe I had never heard of it with it being as popular as it was so many years ago. I hope it comes back into the light and is enjoyed by many again. I must say that I believe Rhett Butler, of Gone With the Wind, got some of his characteristics from a male character in this book. A joy to read and when I had to be away from it, I felt the characters living on in the background of my mind waiting for my return to carry on with their story.
Nov 21, 2014 Chris rated it liked it
Not bad, though slow at parts. I have the Lamplighter Publishing copy which I understand has been edited somewhat. The overall story is great but the characters lack some of the depth you'd expect with a book this size; not sure how else to describe it. It seems the author wants you to connect to the characters but because they are lacking something I found it hard to do so. In the end I'm glad to have read it but it won't likely be brought out again.
Lana Jackson
Jul 01, 2013 Lana Jackson rated it really liked it
The Lamplighter was published in 1854 and sold 70,000 copies during that time period. It is the story of a young orphan girl mistreated in her youth who comes to know love from people who take her into their homes. The characters are expertly woven together with a surpise connection revealed in the end.

I liked reading the historical aspects of this book because I knew the details were absolutely accurate since it was written in that time period.
Sep 10, 2008 Stephanie rated it really liked it
This read started out a bit tedious for me, but I fell in love with it by the second half! I never thought I'd be so bias, but it was such a relief to actually feel good about reading this book-and that's because it's American. No horrible random racism thrown in to make me feel sorry about liking it-like with (let's be honest here) EVERY Victorian author (not to mention all British fantasists-is that even a word?).
Erika De maria
Jan 11, 2013 Erika De maria rated it it was amazing
This book reminds me a lot of a Dickens story in that there are several story lines that don't appear to have anything to do with each other at first, and yet they all tie up nicely together in the end.

My father bought this book for me for Christmas one year and told me that I would love it...he was right. I Couldn't put it down and read it in a little over a day. To this day, it is still one of my favorite books. <3
Oct 20, 2011 Sarah rated it it was amazing
Shelves: e-book
Started this book last fall, but life got busy and I didn't get back to it until now.... And I loved it! Highly recommend it! It's one I would read again and again! (I gave it 5 stars -I reserve 5 stars for only my very favorites!) Would love to do this as a book club book next year. So much happens in the story that I don't even want to hint at any of it...
Oct 18, 2015 Corrie rated it really liked it
Shelves: spinstars
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 17, 2012 Launna rated it it was amazing
The best description of gaining self control I've read yet is in this book. Lots of great things to learn. I decided not to read it to our children yet. I think the main reason why is because there are some relationships that were ok in that time period (like between cousins) that are not ok now and I want to wait until they are a bit older for those and some other parts.
Oct 29, 2013 Melissa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, religion
I was hoping I had found a lovely old gem in this book, but I was disappointed.

The melodrama of this book was unitentionally funny. Lots of fainting and watering graves with tears, and self-sacrificial grand gestures.

The book is entirely unrealistic. There are not enough redeeming qualities to make it worth your time.
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Maria Susanna Cummins (April 9, 1827 – October 1, 1866) was an American novelist.

Maria Susanna Cummins was born in Salem, Massachusetts, on April 9, 1827. She was the daughter of Honorable David Cummins and Maria F. Kittredge, and was the eldest of four children from that marriage. The Cummins family resided in the neighborhood of Dorchester in Boston, Massachusetts. Cummins' father encouraged her
More about Maria Susanna Cummins...

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