The Moonstone (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Penguin, Jun 1, 1999 - Fiction - 528 pages
42 Reviews
‘When you looked down into the stone, you looked into a yellow deep that drew your eyes into it so that they saw nothing else’

The Moonstone, a yellow diamond looted from an Indian temple and believed to bring bad luck to its owner, is bequeathed to Rachel Verinder on her eighteenth birthday. That very night the priceless stone is stolen again and when Sergeant Cuff is brought in to investigate the crime, he soon realizes that no one in Rachel’s household is above suspicion. Hailed by T. S. Eliot as ‘the first, the longest, and the best of modern English detective novels’, The Moonstone is a marvellously taut and intricate tale of mystery, in which facts and memory can prove treacherous and not everyone is as they first appear.

Sandra Kemp’s introduction examines The Moonstone as a work of Victorian sensation fiction and an early example of the detective genre, and discusses the technique of multiple narrators, the role of opium, and Collins’s sources and autobiographical references.



  

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Character development, YEAH! - Goodreads
I'm afraid I neglected my own writing for a day or two. - Goodreads
There is alot of dry wit and good writing. - Goodreads
No quick resolutions here. - Goodreads

Review: The Moonstone

User Review  - Alex - Goodreads

The Moonstone is known as the first detective novel*, and it's a cracking one. You can see things invented here that were directly borrowed by future writers: Holmes' overconfidence (and his use of ... Read full review

Review: The Moonstone

User Review  - Beth - Goodreads

I finally got around to reading Wilkie Collins' The Moonstone, published in 1868 and often cited as one of the first detective novels ever written. The Moonstone told a great mystery story, complete ... Read full review

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Selected pages

Contents

INTRODUCTION
NOTES
FURTHER READING
BIOGRAPHICAL
BACKGROUND
BOOKS
ARTICLES
NOTE ON THE TEXT
CHAPTER I
CHAPTER II
CHAPTER III
CHAPTER IV
CHAPTER V
CHAPTER VI
CHAPTER VII
CHAPTER VIII

PREFACE
PREFACE TO THE PRESENT EDITION
PROLOGUE
I
II
III
IV
FIRST PERIOD THE LOSS OF THE DIAMOND 1848
CHAPTER I
CHAPTER II
CHAPTER III
CHAPTER IV
CHAPTER V
CHAPTER VI
CHAPTER VII
CHAPTER VIII
CHAPTER IX
CHAPTER X
CHAPTER XI
CHAPTER XII
CHAPTER XIII
CHAPTER XIV
CHAPTER XV
CHAPTER XVI
CHAPTER XVII
CHAPTER XVIII
CHAPTER XIX
CHAPTER XX
CHAPTER XXI
CHAPTER XXII
CHAPTER XXIII
SECOND PERIOD THE DISCOVERY OF THE TRUTH 18481849
FIRST NARRATIVE
SECOND NARRATIVE
CHAPTER I
CHAPTER II
CHAPTER III
THIRD NARRATIVE
CHAPTER I
CHAPTER II
CHAPTER III
CHAPTER IV
CHAPTER V
CHAPTER VI
CHAPTER VII
CHAPTER VIII
CHAPTER IX
CHAPTER X
FOURTH NARRATIVE
FIFTH NARRATIVE
CHAPTER I
SIXTH NARRATIVE
I
II
III
IV
V
SEVENTH NARRATIVE
EIGHTH NARRATIVE
EPILOGUE
I THE STATEMENT OF SERGEANT CUFFS MAN 1849
II THE STATEMENT OF THE CAPTAIN 1849
III THE STATEMENT OF MR MURTHWAITE 1850In a Letter to MR BRUFF
NOTES
Copyright

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About the author (1999)

William Wilkie Collins was born in London in 1824, the eldest son of a successful painter, William Collins. He studied law and was admitted to the bar but never practiced his nominal profession, devoting his time to writing instead. His first published book was a biography of his father, his second a florid historical romance. The first hint of his later talents came with "Basil" (1852), a vivid tale of seduction, treachery, and revenge.
In 1851 Collins had met Charles Dickens, who would become his close friend and mentor. Collins was soon writing unsigned articles and stories for Dickens's magazine, "Household Words," and his novels were serialized in its pages. Collins brought out the boyish, adventurous side of Dickens's character; the two novelists traveled to Italy, Switzerland, and France together, and their travels produced such lighthearted collaborations as "The Lazy Tour of Two Idle Apprentices." They also shared a passion for the theater, and Collins's melodramas, notably "The Frozen Deep," were presented by Dickens's private company, with Dickens and Collins in leading roles.
Collins's first mystery novel was "Hide and Seek" (1853). His first popular success was The Woman in White (1860), followed by "No Name" (1862), "Armadale" (1866), and "The Moonstone" (1868), whose Sergeant Cuff became a prototype of the detective hero in English fiction. Collins's concentration on the seamier side of life did not endear him to the critics of his day, but he was among the most popular of Victorian novelists. His meticulously plotted, often violent novels are now recognized as the direct ancestors of the modern mystery novel and thriller.
Collins's private life was an opensecret among his friends. He had two mistresses, one of whom bore him three children. His later years were marred by a long and painful eye disease. His novels, increasingly didactic, declined greatly in quality, but he continued to write by dictating to a secretary until 1886. He died in 1889.

Judith Squires teaches Politics at the University of Bristol. Sandra Kemp teaches English at Goldsmiths College, University of London.

Bibliographic information