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The Moonstone

by Wilkie Collins

A fabulous gem is looted from a sacred Hindu shrine during he siege of an Indian city. With his dying breath one of the shrine’s guardians tells Colonel John Herncastle that the Moonstone will have its revenge. Fifty years later, Herncastle bequeaths the diamond to his niece, Rachel Verinder as an eighteenth birthday gift. An act of generosity? Or merely trying to transfer the curse?

Rachel receives the jewel at a family gathering but when the next day dawns it is nowhere to be found. Scotland Yard’s famed bloodhound Sergeant Cuff is soon on the case, but is thrown when the prime suspect commits suicide…

Teasing, tortuous and utterly gripping. The Moonstonewas hailed by T.S Eliot as the first and best modern English detective novels



About Wilkie Collins

Wilkie Collins was born in London in 1824, the eldest son of the landscape painter William Collins. In 1846, having spent five years in the tea business, he was entered to read for the bar at Lincoln's Inn, where he gained the legal knowledge that was to give him much material for his writing. From the early fifties, he was a friend of Charles Dickens, acting with him, contributing to Household Words, travelling with him on the Continent. Dickens produced and acted in two melodramas written by Collins, The Lighthouse (1855) and The Frozen Deep (1857). Collins is best remembered for his novels, particularly The Woman in White (1860) and The Moonstone (1868), which T. S. Eliot called 'the first, the longest, and the best of modern English detective novels'. His later, and at the time rather sensational, novels include The New Magdalen (1873) and The Law and The Lady (1875). Collins also braved the moral censure of the Victorian age by keeping two women (and their households) while marrying neither. He died in 1889.

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