The Woman in White

The Woman in White

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

William Wilkie Collins (1824 – 1889) was an English novelist, playwright, and author of short stories. His best-known works are The Woman in White, The Moonstone, Armadale, and No Name. Collins was born into the family of painter William Collins in London. He received his early education at home from his mother. He then attended an academy and a private boarding school. He also traveled with his family to Italy and France, and learned the French and Italian languages. He served as a clerk in the firm of the tea merchants Antrobus & Co. His first novel Iolani, or Tahiti as It Was; a Romance, was rejected by publishers in 1845. His next novel, Antonina, was published in 1850. In 1851 he met Charles Dickens, and the two became close friends. A number of Collins\'s works were first published in Dickens\'s journals All the Year Round and Household Words. The two collaborated on several dramatic and fictional works, and some of Collins\'s plays were performed by Dickens\'s acting company.
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The Moonstone

The Moonstone

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

William Wilkie Collins (1824 – 1889) was an English novelist, playwright, and author of short stories. His best-known works are The Woman in White, The Moonstone, Armadale, and No Name. Collins was born into the family of painter William Collins in London. He received his early education at home from his mother. He then attended an academy and a private boarding school. He also traveled with his family to Italy and France, and learned the French and Italian languages. He served as a clerk in the firm of the tea merchants Antrobus & Co. His first novel Iolani, or Tahiti as It Was; a Romance, was rejected by publishers in 1845. His next novel, Antonina, was published in 1850. In 1851 he met Charles Dickens, and the two became close friends. A number of Collins\'s works were first published in Dickens\'s journals All the Year Round and Household Words. The two collaborated on several dramatic and fictional works, and some of Collins\'s plays were performed by Dickens\'s acting company.
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Armadale

Armadale

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

The novel has a convoluted plot about two distant cousins both named Allan Armadale. The father of one had murdered the father of the other (the two fathers are also named Allan Armadale). The story starts with a deathbed confession by the murderer in the form of a letter to be given to his baby son when he grows up. Many years are skipped over. The son, mistreated at home, runs away from his mother and stepfather, and takes up a wandering life under the assumed name of Ozias Midwinter.
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The Last Stage Coachman

The Last Stage Coachman

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

Wilkie Collins was an English novelist and playwright. Collins was also a lifelong friend of the legendary writer Charles Dickens with whom he worked with on some plays and other fictional works. In total Collins was the author of 30 novels, 14 plays and more than 60 short stories with his best known works being The Woman in White and The Moonstone. This edition of Collins’ The Last Stage Coachman includes a Table of Contents.
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John Jago's Ghost or the Dead Alive

John Jago's Ghost or the Dead Alive

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

William Wilkie Collins (1824 - 1889) was an English novelist, playwright, and author of short stories. His best-known works are The Woman in White (1859), No Name (1862), Armadale (1866), and The Moonstone (1868). Collins's works were classified at the time as "sensation novels," a genre seen nowadays as the precursor to detective and suspense fiction. He also wrote penetratingly on the plight of women and on the social and domestic issues of his time. For example, his 1854 Hide and Seek contained one of the first portrayals of a deaf character in English literature. As did many writers of his time, Collins published most of his novels as serials in magazines such as Dickens's All the Year Round and was known as a master of the form, creating just the right degree of suspense to keep his audience reading from week to week. Sales of All The Year Round increased when The Woman in White followed A Tale of Two Cities.
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The Legacy of Cain

The Legacy of Cain

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

When a condemned woman asks the local Minister to take her daughter home, the childless man is touched and finds himself unable to refuse. Yet the prisoner is unrepentant of the murder of her husband. Will her vices be passed on to this seemingly sweet child?
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The Frozen Deep

The Frozen Deep

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

Exchanging vows of love with sailor Frank Aldersley the night before his departure, Clara Burnham is haunted by the memory of Richard Wardour, and his mistaken belief that they will one day marry. With her gift of 'Second Sight', Clara foresees terrible tragedy ahead and is racked by guilt. Allied to two different ships, the two men at first have no cause to meet — until disaster strikes and they find themselves united in a battle for survival. It cannot be long before they discover the nature of their rivalry, and the hot-tempered Wardour must choose how to take his revenge. Based on the doomed 1845 expedition to the Arctic, and originally performed as a play starring both Collins and Dickens, 'The Frozen Deep' is a dramatic tale of vengeance and self-sacrifice which went on to inspire the character of Sydney Carton in Charles Dickens' 'A Tale of Two Cities'. NB: This is a separate work by Wilkie Collins It is a novel, published serially in 'Temple Bar' between August and October 1874 and then published as a book, and is not the play of the same name that Charles Dickens and Wilkie Collins collaborated on in 1856 and that they both appeared in and that was subsequently published in 1857.
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The Poisoned Meal

The Poisoned Meal

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

Wilkie Collins was an English novelist and playwright. Collins was also a lifelong friend of the legendary writer Charles Dickens with whom he worked with on some plays and other fictional works. In total Collins was the author of 30 novels, 14 plays and more than 60 short stories with his best known works being The Woman in White and The Moonstone. This edition of Collins’ The Poisoned Meal includes a Table of Contents.
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Miss Jeromette and the Clergyman

Miss Jeromette and the Clergyman

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

an excerpt from the beginning: My brother, the clergyman, looked over my shoulder before I was aware of him, and discovered that the volume which completely absorbed my attention was a collection of famous Trials, published in a new edition and in a popular form. He laid his finger on the Trial which I happened to be reading at the moment. I looked up at him; his face startled me. He had turned pale. His eyes were fixed on the open page of the book with an expression which puzzled and alarmed me. "My dear fellow," I said, "what in the world is the matter with you?" He answered in an odd absent manner, still keeping his finger on the open page. "I had almost forgotten," he said. "And this reminds me." "Reminds you of what?" I asked. "You don't mean to say you know anything about the Trial?" "I know this," he said. "The prisoner was guilty." "Guilty?" I repeated. "Why, the man was acquitted by the jury, with the full approval of the judge! What call you possibly mean?" "There are circumstances connected with that Trial," my brother answered, "which were never communicated to the judge or the jury - which were never so much as hinted or whispered in court. I know them - of my own knowledge, by my own personal experience. They are very sad, very strange, very terrible. I have mentioned them to no mortal creature. I have done my best to forget them. You - quite innocently - have brought them back to my mind. They oppress, they distress me. I wish I had found you reading any book in your library, except that book!" My curiosity was now strongly excited. I spoke out plainly. "Surely," I suggested, "you might tell your brother what you are unwilling to mention to persons less nearly related to you. We have followed different professions, and have lived in different countries, since we were boys at school. But you know you can trust me." He considered a little with himself. "Yes," he said. "I know I can trust you." He waited a moment, and then he surprised me by a strange question. "Do you believe," he asked, "that the spirits of the dead can return to earth, and show themselves to the living?" I answered cautiously - adopting as my own the words of a great English writer, touching the subject of ghosts. "You ask me a question," I said, "which, after five thousand years, is yet undecided. On that account alone, it is a question not to be trifled with." My reply seemed to satisfy him. "Promise me," he resumed, "that you will keep what I tell you a secret as long as I live. After my death I care little what happens. Let the story of my strange experience be added to the published experience of those other men who have seen what I have seen, and who believe what I believe. The world will not be the worse, and may be the better, for knowing one day what I am now about to trust to your ear alone."
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Man and Wife

Man and Wife

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

In three months from the memorable day when his solicitor had informed him that he was a free man, Mr. Vanborough possessed the wife he desired, to grace the head of his table and to push his fortunes in the world--the Legislature of Great Britain being the humble servant of his treachery, and the respectable accomplice of his crime.
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Poor Miss Finch

Poor Miss Finch

Wilkie Collins

Fiction / Mystery / Travel

You are here invited to read the story of an Event which occurred in an out-of-the-way corner of England, some years since. The persons principally concerned in the Event are:—a blind girl; two (twin) brothers; a skilled surgeon; and a curious foreign woman. I am the curious foreign woman. And I take it on myself—for reasons which will presently appear—to tell the story. So far we understand each other. Good. I may make myself known to you as briefly as I can. I am Madame Pratolungo—widow of that celebrated South American patriot, Doctor Pratolungo. I am French by birth. Before I married the Doctor, I went through many vicissitudes in my own country. They ended in leaving me (at an age which is of no consequence to anybody) with some experience of the world; with a cultivated musical talent on the pianoforte; and with a comfortable little fortune unexpectedly bequeathed to me by a relative of my dear dead mother (which fortune I shared with good Papa and with my younger sisters). To these qualifications I added another, the most precious of all, when I married the Doctor; namely—a strong infusion of ultra-liberal principles. Vive la République!
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