As the inscription on his tombstone reveals, Wilkie Collins wanted to be remembered as the “author of The Woman in White,” for it was this novel that secured his reputation during his lifetime. The novel begins with a drawing teacher’s eerie late-night encounter with a mysterious woman in white, and then follows his love for Laura Fairlie, a young woman who is falsely incarcerated in an asylum by her husband, Sir Percival Glyde, and his sinister accomplice, Count Fosco.
This edition returns to the original text that galvanized England when it was published in serial form in All the Year Round magazine in 1860. Three different prefaces Collins wrote for the novel, as well as two of his essays on the book’s composition, are reprinted, along with nine illustrations. The appendices include contemporary reviews, along with essays on lunacy, asylums, mesmerism, and the rights of women.
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