|First one volume edition by Smith, Elder in 1871.|
I have just finished The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins.
*Deep sigh and a big smile*
This book is widely considered the first ever detective novel and precedes the better known works of Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes and Agatha Christie's multitude of murder mystery novels.
Collins was a contemporary of Dickens and writes charmingly of the adventure of the Moonstone, a huge yellow diamond, on its travels from deep in India to mid-19th Century England.
Composed as a collection of accounts written by those characters that have contact with the diamond and its mysterious disappearance in a country house in Yorkshire, this book had enough suspense to keep me from putting it down. Night after late night I have struggled to continue reading as my eyelids battled against me, impatient to know where the tale would lead next.
Along with mystery, war, peace, romance, tragedy, country and city life combine to give you a vivid picture of life circa 1850.
I loved the book from the moment I started to the disappointing moment that I finished it. It's by far the best thing I've read for ages (even if I have read 2 brilliant Jane Austen novels this year!). I am sure this is one I will return to as the twists and turns will keep me on my feet after some time has passed to dull my memory.
Get it! It's great!
The FREE Kindle edition is available at Amazon (it's a good quality file, this is how I got my copy).