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90s Slang You Should Know

dime novel

a cheap melodramatic or sensational novel, usually in paperback and selling for ten cents, especially such an adventure novel popular c1850 to c1920.
Origin of dime novel
An Americanism dating back to 1860-65 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for dime novel
Historical Examples
  • He held a dime novel with his other hand, reading; but Pie-Wagon Pete kept an eye on him.

  • If you want that story, you can go and buy yourself a dime novel.

  • The dollar-and-a-half novel of to-day was the dime novel of yesterday in an avatar which left its essence unchanged.

    Imaginary Interviews W. D. Howells
  • He had a dime novel in one pocket, an English sixpence in another—And what was this?

    Dorothy at Oak Knowe Evelyn Raymond
  • Of course you don't believe this; it reads too much like a dime novel.

  • The moral standards of the dime novel are always of the highest.

    Recollections of a Varied Life George Cary Eggleston
  • When I reached this place I learned that I was wrong and that it wasn't a dime novel after all.

    The Valley of Fear Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Why, just to contemplate it was better than reading a dime novel!

    Campmates Kirk Munroe
  • "It sounds good enough for a dime novel," answered the girl from the West.

    Dave Porter At Bear Camp Edward Stratemeyer
  • In that remarkable group of authors who made the dime novel famous, the late Col. Prentiss Ingraham was one of the giants.

    The Fiction Factory John Milton Edwards
British Dictionary definitions for dime novel

dime novel

(US) (formerly) a cheap melodramatic novel, usually in paperback Also called (esp Brit) penny-dreadful
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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