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A very good book by Wilkie Collins with a few flaws
on April 19, 2015
This is a suspenseful tale with several plots. It is well-written but although I read the story from beginning to end, I felt that it was over-long and I could figure out what would happen next. Despite this, I enjoyed the story. I read many of Collins’ books and enjoyed them all.
It is 1828. A husband dies and his widow who becomes the senior partner in a thriving business in England and Germany wants to give female employees the same jobs and rights as men. She is able to implement her goal in England and wants to travel to Germany to persuade her partners to implements her plan.
The widow also wants to show that she can cure madness by being kind to deranged persons. She wants to bring one such person, a man, into her home “one of the most dangerous lunatics we have in the house (asylum).”
This man has a mysterious history.
One of the German partners refuses his son permission to marry a nice young woman who is the daughter of a woman who many people claim is evil. Among much else, they claim she stole poisons from her husband when he died.
There are two German partners and the allegedly evil woman has an evil impact upon one of the partners.
This woman has no money, her relatives refuse to help her, she is in debt and faces imprisonment, and she needs to get a large sum of money. She wants to get her daughter married to the son of the other German partner.