The Woman in White is Wilkie Collins' fifth published novel, written in It is considered to . Harper's Weekly (USA). It was published in book form in download The Woman in White (Collins Classics) by Wilkie Collins from site's Fiction Books Store. Everyday low prices on a huge range of new releases and. The Woman in White book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. 'In one moment, every drop of blood in my body was brought to.
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Generally considered the first English sensation novel, The Woman in White features the remarkable heroine Marian Halcombe earn your way to a free book!. The Woman in White (Bantam Classics) [Wilkie Collins] on kaz-news.info The Woman in White and millions of other books are available for instant access. Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. Starred Review. Playwright and audio dramatist Highlight, take notes, and search in the book; In this edition, page numbers are just like the physical edition; Length: pages; Word Wise.
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A bold new adaptation of Wilkie Collins' classic gothic novel. Top-Rated Episodes S1. Share this Rating Title: The Woman in White — 6.
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Ordeal by Innocence Drama Mystery Thriller. Vanity Fair An adaptation of the novel by William Makepeace Thackeray. Wilson Biography Drama Mystery. A grieving widow discovers that her seemingly ideal husband lived many secret lives. Howards End — Drama Romance. The Split Little Women Edit Cast Series cast summary: Jessie Buckley Marian Halcombe 5 episodes, Olivia Vinall Sir Percival Glyde 5 episodes, Art Malik Newest review: This was a reread and I enjoyed it immensely.
First review: This was a really amazing book that takes you on such a journey! I started it four days ago, and now - after having finished it - I feel like I've returned back home safely after having been gone for a long time. I don't know if that makes much sense, but that's how I feel: Now, this was my first book by Wilkie Collins and all I Newest review: Now, this was my first book by Wilkie Collins and all I knew was that it was supposed to be a Victorian, scary read.
It was in the beginning, and also slightly in the middle, but I was sad to realize towards the end that this turned more into a detective novel. I'm not fond of detective novels, and therefore that slightly decreased my reading experience and my fondness of this book. That being said, I loved how this book is constructed through diverse narratives that are all pieces in a big puzzle.
The narratives allowed for me to connect with the characters on an intimate level, and the characters were simply amazing!
They stuck to my mind and followed me around when I wasn't reading, and I think that they are the best part of this story. Even though I did find some of the things happening too convenient for my taste, I can't neglect the fact that this is a beautifully crafted piece of work that leaves an impression on you.
I was contemplating between 3 and 4 stars while reading, so in the end I decided to go for 3. I loved the book despite its weaknesses, I just would've hoped for more Victorian eeriness and less of a detective novel. View 2 comments. This is one of the greatest books I have read in my life. It is really amazing that how many great books I have come across and read this year, all thanks to goodreads.
Although his prose is a little long winding, he nevertheless has well managed to k This is one of the greatest books I have read in my life. There is also a cinematic quality to his writing. Normally when I read a book, it engages with my own mental interpretations as I read along. But reading experience of this book was so different; not at any point Collins allowed my own mental interpretations to come in to light.
He held them tight to his story and convincingly too, that I was unable to wander on my own. This phrase from the preamble sets the pace for the story justifying the use of number of narrators to tell it — their reliability varying in degree.
This is yet another new experience for me, hearing the story from so many different narrators. And I felt it is a refreshing method to have the story told through different persons, given the length of the book. This served two purposes; one was avoiding the reader being bored of the story and the other is to avoid it being biased.
There were a hero and heroine in the characters of Walter Hartright and Marian Halcombe. I was with them through every step of the way of their difficult and dangerous journey collecting the necessary evidence to bring justice to a wronged woman. I also liked the character of the Laura, the young innocent victim, who bore such vile cruelty with a calm resolution of her own.
Then there are the villains: Sir Percival Glyde — an epitome of brutality and Count Fosco — the most sinister character that I have thus far come across with his cold, calculating and brilliant brain. All these dark and dear characters contributed to the plot of the story to make it one of the best classic stories I have ever read.
The book which is a pioneer in sensational novel was a great success in its time and I believe still is which in itself accounts for its greatness. Simply, I loved the book and it was a great read. View all 15 comments. Oct 20, Megan Baxter rated it really liked it. The Woman in White is a gem of a novel - creepy, dense, menacing, and always intriguing. For a long time, the reader isn't quite sure what is going on, only that it isn't good - and it's to Collins' credit that when the plots are revealed, they are as interesting as anything I was supposing.
The rest of this review has been withdrawn due to the recent changes in Goodreads policy and enforcement. You can read why I came to this decision here.
In the meantime, you can read the entire review at The Woman in White is a gem of a novel - creepy, dense, menacing, and always intriguing. In the meantime, you can read the entire review at Smorgasbook View all 13 comments.
The Woman in White is an extraordinary book. It captivated the reading public of the time, and in parts is almost as breathlessly mesmerising and gripping to read now.
When it was first published, it wowed the reading public, and manufacturers got on the ban The Woman in White is an extraordinary book. It can truly be said that this novel was a sensation.
No longer would gruesome and spectacular crimes only happen in fantastic Medieval castles, but behind the doors of ordinary domestic environments. Virtuous women would still be menaced by dastardly cads, but the element of realism was key.
And to top all this, The Woman in White is also considered to be among the first mystery novels. Yet in , at the time of publication, Wilkie Collins was still very much in the shadow of Charles Dickens. Back in April , the twenty-seven year old Wilkie Collins had already turned his back on convention. His father wanted him to become a clergyman, but after some agonising, Wilkie Collins went a different way, and trained to become a barrister.
He completed his legal studies and was called to the bar in , but never formally practised, instead deciding to become a writer. Dickens, then forty years of age, was by now a literary phenomenon, with his fingers in lots of pies. Although Dickens himself earned over a thousand pounds per annum from his work on the magazine, Wilkie Collins was initially paid by the column. Four years later, in September , he finally became a staff writer who would be paid the standard rate of five guineas per week.
For Victorian readers, to read a novel in serial form was the norm, and quite a few of these serials have since become classic novels.
Sales immediately increased! What a treasure trove these Victorian readers had in their magazines!
The Woman in White
Both novels are thrilling even now, with a strong story line, gothic feel and complex plot. Both dealt with secrets, past and present, questions and doubts about identity and social position. Both made use of the ideas of suspect wills, forged documents, inheritances, secret marriages, and illegitimacy; themes very much in flux in the changing society in the Victorian era.
What makes these novels so appealing to us now is that they are both exciting page-turners, with suspenseful mystery at their heart, and twists a-plenty. The Woman in White is a complex tale, with an unusual narrative structure. It is told by several narrators, and different forms, either as reported action, or diaries, or letters.
In a way it resembles an epistolary novel, as each narrator has a distinct narrative voice. We begin to wonder who is to be trusted, and who might be an unreliable narrator.
We also see how some characters are vague, or naive, others are driven and passionate, yet others again are vain, or dissembling.
Wilkie Collins is very much in the driving seat throughout this novel, carefully rationing out little pieces of the jigsaw, and disclosing the secret like a series of Russian dolls. He also manipulates our feelings, controlling who we think we trust. The entire novel is deviously plotted. Oddly though, reading in the novel form we now have available, this is not as evident. The narratives varied in length from one page to, surprisingly, two hundred.
Some are divided into parts, and sometimes an installment contained parts of one and part of another. One narrator even returns later. The only choice was to have a completely new structure for the novel itself: The chapter names are also slightly different, for instance this magnificent original narrative title: Count of the Holy Roman Empire.
Perpetual Archmaster of the Rosicrucian Masons of Mesopotamia. These details so reminiscent of Dickens are sadly lost in most modern editions. Also, the suspense of the former endings of each installment are also lost, or rather subsumed into part of the action, but the whole flows just as well, and is just as addictive. Wilkie Collins clearly understood people very well.
He has created a wealth of wonderful characters. There is the faithful and angelic Laura Fairlie, view spoiler [ entrapped by hide spoiler ] the sinister, secretive Percival Glyde; there is her impossible uncle, the effete connoisseur of the Arts, Frederick Fairlee, source of much of the humour in this book, with his monumental selfishness and exaggerated hypochondria.
There is of course the wonderful Count Fosco, charismatic and cunning, with his cockatoo, his canary-birds, and his pet white mice, who run over his immense body, partnered by his overly dutiful, malevolently vindictive wife. Another is the intelligent, and resourceful Marian Halcombe, one of his most powerful creations.
Some consider that with this mannish, eloquent character, Collins was attempting to create a positive portrayal of a lesbian woman, within the constraints of the time.
Collins attacked middle-class hypocrisy, perhaps because he was himself so bohemian. Outwardly, he was a member of the Establishment. Wilkie Collins lived respectably enough with his mother for many years, whilst setting up his mistress, Caroline Graves, in a house nearby.
Charles Dickens too, was very much the family man in public. In fact although he and Collins both professed to be Christians, they had extraordinary lifestyles, and their views of marriage were very different from each other, for such close friends.
She had married young, had a child, and been widowed.
Wilkie Collins treated Harriet, whom he called Carrie, as his own daughter, and helped to pay for her education. The two stayed together for most of their lives although he refused to marry her as he disliked the institution of marriage. Extraordinarily for the time, Wilkie Collins also had another mistress, the working-class Martha Rudd, by whom he had three children, in a house just a few streets away.
The second installment of The Woman in White begins very melodramatically, to modern eyes, with a young man, Walter Hartright meeting a strange woman dressed all in white, in the mist. This dramatic meeting was rumoured to be how he first met Caroline Graves, on a night-time walk over Hampstead Heath.
For us, for the first time, we meet the mysterious Anne Catherick, whom we know as The Woman in White. But I shall not tell the story here. After serialisation, The Woman in White was published in novel form in , and also that year produced on stage, where it was a sensation.
When serialised works from his magazines were published in novel form, or on stage, Dickens allowed the advertising to specifically name the authors of the novels.
The public loved The Woman in White , but contemporary critics were generally hostile. But at the time, he was very much viewed as an adjunct to Dickens, the two having collaborated on several articles and stories every year.
The two writers were clearly writing very closely together, and producing a very similar feel to their works. Also sometimes the sarcasm for instance of Marian Halcombe is very reminiscent of Dickens. In , the split finally came. However he was in poor health. He continued to suffer from gout, and it now especially affected his eyes. Within a year, the laudanum he was taking for his continual gout became a serious problem. He certainly never bettered the novels he published in the s.
With their themes of jealousy, murder and adultery, these thrilling tales are as electrifying, horrific, suspenseful, and intricately plotted as any Victorian classics you are likely to read.
View all 45 comments. Apr 17, Virginia rated it really liked it Shelves: My friend Nora Ephron suggested i read this. Okay, I don't know her, but I feel like she'd be a friend.
Therefore I honored her recommendations. In her collection of essays "I Feel Bad about my Neck," she includes a bit about books that have completely transported her. She says it better than I do about this wonderful mystery: Days pass as I savor every word. Each minute I spend away from the book pretending to be interested in everyday life is a misery. How could I have waited so long to read this book? When can I get back to it?
Halfway through I return to New York to work, to mix a movie, and I sit in the mix studio unable to focus on anything but whether my favorite character in the book will survive.
I will not be able to bear it if anything bad happens to my beloved Marian Halcombe. Every so often I look up from the book and see a roomful of people waiting for me to make a decision about whether the music is too soft or the thunder is too loud, and I can't believe they don't understand that what I'm doing is much more important—I'm reading the most wonderful book.
I want to say upfront that I am a fan of Victorian writing. Wordy, in the right hands, works for me. And Wilkie Collins and Charles Dickens have the right hands! Their words unfurl like the petals of a flower, and at the heart you are presented with a gem: They were true wordsmiths, and I would hotly contest any need to "edit" their works. Once we passed the exposition and started climbing plot graph mountain toward the climax, I I want to say upfront that I am a fan of Victorian writing.
Once we passed the exposition and started climbing plot graph mountain toward the climax, I was hooked. This is the second Collins' I have read, and both times I experienced moments when I feared that the plot was going to devolve into simple Gothic melodrama, laughable by our modern standards of mystery. Each time, I was wrong. Sure, the dated nature of the novel is evident in the behavior of some of the characters.
They are so innocent--and by innocent, I mean gullible! They are so trusting, and accept everyone at their word; but then, what choice did they really have? How would you go about checking someone's credentials back then, especially on a moment's notice? There were times, though, when I did roll my eyes--the villain assures a character that he is nice, so the character smiles and relaxes. Surely he must be nice if he says he is! This happens several times. Also, a character discovers, through a slip by the villain, that vital evidence is hidden in a location, and the character retires to the inn for the night, planning to search the location the next day.
I want to yell, "Go there tonight! Don't give them time to retrieve the information before you! Aside from these few flaws, I found the plot line intriguing and unpredictable. There are two unforgettable characters--Count Fosco and Marian Holcombe, or "the magnificent Marian," as the Count refers to her.
This is one point on which the Count and I agree. Intelligent, resourceful, courageous, quick-witted--she is a force to be reckoned with. Despite all this and a rocking hot bod, she is plain ugly is the word that is used , so apparently matrimony is out of the question. Victorian men are not too bright, evidently. Marian is content to devote her life to her younger sister, Laura, who is the antithesis of her sister: She is, however, quite pretty.
When the attractive young drawing master arrives at Limmeridge, guess who he falls in love with? Of course, Laura never does or says anything to merit this, while Marian is being charming and vivacious all over the place. I was afraid, for awhile, that Laura was the Collins equivalent of Lucie Manette, and she would be weeping and fainting for the entirety of the book. In the middle of the book, she does grow a backbone and actually defies her husband several times.
Later, however, view spoiler [she endures a couple of months in an asylum and this almost destroys her sanity. Now, this is a private asylum for wealthy people and there's no mention of abuse, but her reason is seriously affected. This is where I really had a problem with Walter. When he meets Laura again, after a year apart, she is literally like a child.
She speaks like a child and spends all her time drawing terrible pictures.
Woman in White book review
Walter and Marian are united in their determination to right her wrongs and bring justice to Sir Percival and the Count. Caring for Laura and plotting against their enemies throws them closely together, but does he recognize that Marian is worth one hundred of her sister? Of course not! He loves Marian as a sister, while reserving all his passion for the complete absence of personality that is Laura. He alone has the great good sense to recognize the "sublime" qualities of "the magnificent Marian.
He is ruthless and self-serving, but immensely likable, all the same. Underneath his charm, he has the soul of a cobra. The cobra has a weakness, though, and it is his admiration for Marion. Despite the fact that he knows what a formidable opponent she is and that she could actually succeed in foiling his plans, he cannot bring himself to allow any harm to come to her.
All in all, this is an engrossing read with some superbly drawn characters. I highly recommend for anyone who doesn't turn pale and tremble like a Victorian heroine at the sight of a book over pages!
It was so much fun! I greatly enjoyed sharing the reading experience with my group. This second reading didn't really change any of my previous opinions, but rather, reinforced them. I still have a fondness for Count Fosco and still think Walter is a schmuck for not choosing Marian over Laura, but it remains a great read!
I've never liked the term "butterface.
Nonetheless, it unavoidably popped into my head at my introduction from behind to Miss Halcombe, as Collins allows Hartright to ogle "the rare beauty of her form Looks like he hits the gym plenty I've already put it on urbandictionary. Collins, a polyamorous laudanum addict, invented a genre called the sensation novel with Woman in White.
He took Gothic stories away from their ghost-filled castles and directly into what he called "the secret theatre of home": Unsurprisingly, this has been a big hit with generations of people who dislike their spouses. And it's a terrific book. The titular woman shows up almost immediately to hook you in; after a brief slow-down to set the stage, around a third of the way in the tension ratchets up and never lets go again.
It's incredibly gripping, and there are no plot holes. It features several brilliant characters: It's set up as an unusual epistolary: The switching of narrators allows Collins to play a bunch of daring tricks: And, of course, it lets Collins experiment extensively with the idea of the unreliable narrator.
At least three passages are overtly untrustworthy Fairlie, Mrs. Catherick and Fosco are also the most entertaining narrators ; and since Collins obviously meant for us to understand that, might it not follow that the rest of the narrators are equally untrustworthy?
Major spoilers: Is it possible that he was stalling? Was it really impossible for him to go to the police? Does he bear some responsibility for Fosco's murder? In each of these cases, Collins gives him an excuse: Kyrle insists that he has "not a shadow of a case"; the scarred man picks up on Fosco's identity as Hartright does. I'm not convinced that we're supposed to believe Hartright is lying to us, but I do think we're supposed to think about it.
Great intro and great endnotes. View all 27 comments. Mar 25, Bradley rated it liked it Shelves: Sometimes it is so damn hard to put your mindspace in the right place to enjoy a piece so far out of your frame, and this is definitely one of those books. I knew a bit of what I might expect, after all, I did enjoy reading Drood and so I got a real hankering to read an actual extremely popular novel by such a wild character in a modern book about Wilkie and Charles.
But that's neither here nor there. I probably wouldn't have ever picked this one up without it, though. On to the novel at hand. It' Sometimes it is so damn hard to put your mindspace in the right place to enjoy a piece so far out of your frame, and this is definitely one of those books.
It's a mystery! And if I can believe wikipedia, it's one of the very first ever written, and considered to be one of the top novels ever written! I mean, that's all great and all. But did I enjoy it? I did. To a degree. Of course, the mental gymnastics were pretty strenuous. Every step of the way, she made the most horrible decisions, either by not listening to her heart or not having a brain in her head.
If this were a mystery novel of even 20 years after its written date of , we'd have killed this one off like a redshirt for sure. I've never seen such brilliant contrivance to make such an unlikable airhead view spoiler [pull through to the very end, have her love, her fortune, and her unwitting revenge upon all who had assailed her.
The Woman in White
That being said, I thought the Count was pretty much awesome. Everyone except for Laura and Walter managed to transform themselves from cardboard cutouts into genuine people full of both good and bad. Sometimes the descriptions were cumbersome and made me wish for a bit of a Hemingway Edit, but that's a complaint I can make about any of the literature of that day. There was one notable exception. I loved our enlightenment of Count Fosco's animals. It's details like this that turn a sensational-ish novel into something a bit more memorable.
I swear, though: Laura was consistently tstl.
Thank GOD for her half-sister. The one thing I cannot be more pleased about, after finishing this, is the fact that there wasn't some long-drawn-out court scene so reminiscent of modern police drama or mysteries. We had the hint of it in the beginning, and it could have gone that way, but I can't be happier with the outcome as it actually occurred. There was a hell of a lot of expanded plot in this novel, and it was all so logical and well thought out. How could people trust each other as much as they did?
I mean, really? Was it a function of the black and white nature of the novels of the time to pop all of these features out at us in stark and glowing detail?
Or was it just Wilkie? Or was it in actual fact, a real piece of the society in which they all lived? And yet, I'm still forced to set myself into a Victorian England as if it is some truly alien society so foreign and strange to us. It's funny.
I should know better. Nov 05, Gabrielle Dubois rated it it was amazing Shelves: But, as it would be foolish to reject a type of books without having read a single one, I started The Woman in White.
I'm hooked on this story! My French edition is pages, I read the first pages last night! The first sentence, simple, concise, is well chosen: But, finally, we enter fairly quickly in the story and we are quickly captivated.
There had been a case in France some fifty years earlier, and reported in a book that Collins picked up in Paris in , that formed the basis for much of the plot of The Woman in White ; but there was also a scare in England at the time about the possibility that husbands would lock their wives away in asylums for the financial gain their incarceration would bring about. The wife was released and spent much of the rest of her life continuing her attacks upon him.
So while the newspapers and novels of the time were alive with this paranoia, depending as it does on the impossible definitions of sanity and who determines them, Collins was personally involved in it. And he did. The serial was wildly popular, the book followed shortly afterwards, and there were pirated and legitimate theatrical versions almost immediately, as well as a satisfyingly wide range of associated merchandise you could get Woman in White shawls, perfumes, hats and even dances that just goes to prove how little tastes have changed.
Collins was a typical figure of his time in some ways, unconventional in others. He was fired by an energy that created nearly thirty novels, fifty short stories, a dozen plays, non-fiction work and more. He was a good friend of Charles Dickens, who published his works in serial form and almost certainly helped him develop his style.
He never married, but had an extraordinarily complex life with a widow, Caroline Graves, with whom he lived until she married someone else. At that point he began having children with his mistress, Martha Rudd, until Caroline Graves returned two years later. The three of them seem to have reached some sort of accommodation, with Caroline Graves being effectively his wife, and Martha remaining the mistress and mother of his children. Caroline Graves is buried beside him.
As a result, he became quite well-versed in narcotics and their effects; and he became an addict, suffering paranoid delusions and being convinced he was being followed by a ghostly double. The book is a Gothic thriller, a detective story and a romance, and in many ways the forerunner of current detective fiction.
This is one of the ways that Collins makes the story more immediate to his readers; but the other is in the narrative style.To a degree.
Born in Marylebone, London in , Collins' family enrolled him at the Maida Hill Academy in , but then took him to France and Italy with them between and Why, I — I am the omelette! My friend Nora Ephron suggested i read this. siteGlobal Ship Orders Internationally.
The biggest problem I can see is that they would have had to give the registrar 21 days notice of their intention to marry, so would have been banking on Fosco and his spies not paying attention to the official announcements during that 21 day period.
They were true wordsmiths, and I would hotly contest any need to "edit" their works. Vesey 3 episodes,