Classic Book Review: The Law and the Lady

The Law and the Lady by Wilkie Collins

The Law and the Lady
by Wilkie Collins, David Skilton (Editor)

4 out of 5 stars

When Valeria marries Eustace, she discovers that some dark secret has made him marry her under a false name. She meets his mother and finds out his true identity. She appeals to his friends to find out what terrible secret he is hiding. He begs her to leave it alone and warns her that it will only drive them both apart, but she persists and finds that he was accused of a terrible crime and never quite proven innocent. Valeria embarks on a desperate search for evidence that will prove her husband’s innocence, and it leads her down a dark path of insanity. In the meantime, her husband, frustrated with her stubbornness, abandons her. She must sift through rumors of suicide, poison, lies, cruelty, and madness to arrive at the truth.

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Book Review: Basil

Basil by Wilkie Collins

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I do adore Wilkie Collins’ writing, but this sad Gothic tale was seriously depressing from start to finish. In this story, the main character Basil sees a young woman in the street, and instantly falls in love with her. He meets her briefly, and learns that her name is Margaret. Later he approaches her father, and the two are married within a couple of weeks with the proviso that Margaret remain living with her family until her 18th birthday. So Basil is married in name only and can only visit Margaret with her mother as a chaperone. During this time, Basil meets Mr. Mannion, a family friend of his in-laws, but the man is so strange and mysterious that Basil can’t decide if Mannion is friend or foe.

There’s horror and betrayal and violence, insanity and disease and death; Gothic literature at its finest! Continue reading