by John Gabree
Wilkie Collins was highly regarded as a novelist in
the 19th century, and
his "The Woman in White" is
still read today. He was an ingenious plotter and one of the first
great mystery writers.
In "No Name," published in 1862, he displays these talents
to the fullest, along with a great deal of wit and an unexpected facility
at characterization. Despite a certain amount of 19th century indirection, "No
Name" is admirably straightforward if a little long-winded.
Vanstone, in pursuit of an inheritance promised by her father, gets
with the police and so, as an amateur actress, assumes
number of disguises. She encounters a motley and hilarious collection
of persons who might have been invented Dickens himself. Few books
make me laugh out loud. "No Name" did. (1978).
Name by Wilkie Collins