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Late one moonlit night, Walter Hartright encounters a solitary and terrified woman dressed all in white. He saves her from capture by her pursuers and determines to solve the mystery of her distress and terror.
Inspired by an actual criminal case, this gripping tale of murder, intrigue, madness and mistaken identity has never been out of print since its publication and brought Collins great fame and success. Considered to be among the first mystery novels and the first and finest in the genre of 'sensation novels', The Woman in White is noted for its suspenseful plot and unique characterisation.
Collins's use of multiple narrators drew on his legal training and he states 'the story of an offence against the laws is told in Court by more than one witness'.
In 2003, Robert McCrum writing for The Observer ranked The Woman in White number 23 in the top 100 greatest novels of all time. The novel was also listed at number 77 on the BBC's survey The Big Read.
Charles Dickens was a close friend and mentor of Collins, and the two collaborated together on drama and fiction. The Woman in White, as well as some of his other work, was first published in Dickens' journals.
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The outstanding narration is what I enjoyed most
- Leslie Grey McCawley
An achievement in Gothic mystery!