Wilkie Collins was a 19th-century English novelist, playwright, and short story writer. He is best known for his novels 'The Woman in White' and 'The Moonstone', which are considered early examples of detective fiction, with the latter often labeled as the first true detective novel in the English language. Collins's works were characterized by his insightful exploration of the social issues of his time, including the treatment of women and the inequities of the marriage laws. His writing style combined suspense and gothic horror, making him a master of the mystery genre.
This list of books are ONLY the books that have been ranked on the lists that are aggregated on this site. This is not a comprehensive list of all books by this author.
A captivating tale of mystery and suspense, "The Woman in White" follows the story of a young art teacher, Walter Hartright, who encounters a mysterious woman dressed in white on a moonlit road. The woman is revealed to be a mental asylum escapee, and as Hartright delves into her story, he uncovers a web of deceit, madness, and dangerous secrets involving a wealthy, titled family. The narrative explores themes of identity, insanity, and the abuse of power, with a complex plot filled with twists and turns.
"The Moonstone" is a detective novel that revolves around a large, valuable yellow diamond that was stolen from an Indian temple and is now in England. The diamond is bequeathed to a young woman on her eighteenth birthday, but is stolen that same night. The novel follows the investigation of the theft, which is complicated by a series of confusing events and false leads. The resolution involves the unraveling of a tangled web of deception, crime, and colonial guilt.
3. No Name
The novel revolves around the plight of a young woman who, after the sudden death of her parents, discovers that due to a legal technicality, she and her sister are left destitute and illegitimate. Stripped of her social standing and inheritance, she embarks on a quest for vengeance against the relatives who have wronged her. Assuming various identities and employing cunning and deception, she manipulates events and people to reclaim what she believes is rightfully hers, navigating the complexities of Victorian society and the rigid legal system that disenfranchised her. Throughout her journey, she grapples with the moral implications of her actions and the true meaning of family and identity.