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The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins

The Woman in White

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March 2011 Guest Editor Robert Goddard on The Woman in White...

There’s just such a lot to enjoy and admire in this ground-breaking work of mystery and suspense. It was one of my inspirations for trying my hand at novel-writing in the first place. When The Woman in White was published in 1860, it was an instant success. No-one else had ever dared to cram quite so much intrigue into a plot, not least because it’s an extremely difficult thing to do. But Collins brushes the difficulty aside, throws in memorable characters and carries the whole thing off with the aplomb of the master he was. Genius!

Turn mobile detective with the hidden object puzzler. Developed by Freeze Tag Inc. Woman in White has been adapted from Wilkie Collins’ 19th century novel and is available to download now from the App Store, priced £0.69 for iPhone®/iPod® touch and £1.99 for iPad® HD. Just click the button below.

Victorian Mysteries®: Woman in White - SQUARE ENIX Ltd

If you like Wilkie Collins you might also like to read books by Essie Fox.


The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins

The Woman in White famously opens with Walter Hartright's eerie encounter on a moonlit London road. Engaged as a drawing master to the beautiful Laura Fairlie, Walter is drawn into the sinister intrigues of Sir Percival Glyde and his 'charming' friend Count Fosco, who has a taste for white mice, vanilla bonbons and poison. Pursuing questions of identity and insanity along the paths and corridors of English country houses and the madhouse, The Woman in White is the first and most influential of the Victorian genre that combined Gothic horror with psychological realism.


Probably the finest example of 'sensation fiction', a Victorian genre that used suspense as a basic element. This work twists and turns with dastardly deeds and shameful secrets, love and dishonour. Usually regarded as one of the original 'detectivestories, Collins 's novel is much concerned with personal danger, suspense, the conflict of good and evil, and characters at the extremes of suffering and survival - a genuine thriller. The 'rescue of innocence' theme is essential to the genre, and the characterization and psychological detail are elements too often ignored by the thriller. Thackeray stayed up all night to finish it, and so will you. (Kirkus UK)

About the Author

Wilkie Collins (1824-1889) began his literary career writing articles and short stories for Dickens' periodicals. He published a biography of his father and a number of plays but his reputation rests on his novels. Collins found his true fictionalmetier in mystery, suspense and crime. He is best known for his novels in the emerging genres of Sensation and Detective fiction.

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Book Info

Publication date

27th February 2003


Wilkie Collins

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Penguin Classics an imprint of Penguin Books Ltd


720 pages


Literary Fiction
eBook Favourites

Classic fiction (pre c 1945)



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