This popular, extraordinarily prolific British writer penned nearly one hundred novels such as "Richelieu" (1829), "The Gypsy" (1835) as well as plays, poetry and historical writings such as "The Life and Times of Louis XIV" (1838), exceeding the voluminous output of his mentor, Sir Walter Scott; later he turned to diplomacy, serving as a British consul in America and vice-consul at Venice. Item #40522
ALS, 2pp (inlaid), 4¼" X 6 3/4", Norfolk, VA, 1853 May 5. Addressed to M.M. Ballou at Gleason Pictorial in Boston (1820-95, Boston publisher, novelist, travel writer, first editor of Boston Daily Globe). Near fine. "Please excuse my seeming negligence in not having sooner answered your note.... When it arrived I was absent from home wandering about for a few days and the letter was mislaid, It is thus only today that I have seen it and I hasten to apologize for acknowledging it at an earlier period, thinking that in the mean time you have not thought very hardly of Your faithful Servant...." Boldly, attractively penned in brown ink. So profuse is James's apology, though, that he fails to mention the object of Ballou's note! Amusingly, the very next year Ballou's illustrated pictorial (founded 1851) passed along this unflattering tidbit from a London magazine: "The American papers report the particulars of a fire in the house of Mr. G.P.R. James, whereby one stor(e)y was consumed. What a pity it didn't burn many more!"