The Mystery of Edwin Drood

The Mystery of Edwin Drood

Book - 2009
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The Mystery of Edwin Drood is a novel that is itself the subject of one of literature's most enduring mysteries. The story recounts the troubled romance of Rosa Bud and the book's eponymous character, who later vanishes. Was Drood murdered, and if so by whom? All clues point to John Jasper, Drood's lugubrious uncle, who coveted Rosa. Or did Drood orchestrate his own disappearance? As Charles Dickens died before finishing the book, the ending is intriguingly ambiguous.

In his Introduction, Matthew Pearl illuminates the 150-year-long quest to unravel The Mystery of Edwin Drood and lends new insight into the novel, the literary milieu of 1870s England, and the private life of Charles Dickens. This Modern Library edition includes new endnotes and a full transcript of "The Trial of John Jasper for the Murder of Edwin Drood," the 1914 mock court case presided over and argued by the likes of G. K. Chesterton and George Bernard Shaw. Now diehard fans, new readers, and armchair detectives have another opportunity to solve the mystery Dickens took to his grave.
Publisher: New York : Modern Library, 2009
Edition: Modern Library pbk. ed
ISBN: 9780812980455
081298045X
Branch Call Number: MYSTERY 2009
Characteristics: xxiii, 363 p. : ill. ; 21 cm
Additional Contributors: Pearl, Matthew

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straitgate
Dec 24, 2015

I really enjoy Dickens' later works when they became darker and he came under the influence of mystery writers (like Wilkie Collins). This had the potential to be (in my mind) one of Dickens' best if not the best novels. It is very dark and brooding from the get-go and the mysterious death of Edwin Drood is not long in coming and with a host of characters who could be legitimate suspects. It's hard to find the motivation to pick up a book when you know it ends in the middle of things with nothing resolved. For a long time I asked myself, 'why bother?' Eventually I did pick it up after I'd made my way through Dickens but craved more...even if it meant an unfinished work. If you liked Bleak House and Our Mutual Friend you'll like this. If you're more into the humorous or picaersque early Dickens (Pickwick Papers, Martin Chuzzlewit, Old Curiosity Shop) you might not get into this. Read it for Dickens more than for the story. Or maybe you'd like to join the still vigorous debate over theories over who dunnit.

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Chapel_Hill_KenMc
Dec 12, 2014

Certainly not one of Dickens's best, but you have to wonder what he would have done with it had he lived. I read the edition completed by Leon Garfield, which provides a completely predictable, but at least stylistically consistent, ending. This completion is in accord with G.K. Chesterton's comment that there really isn't that much mystery about Edwin Drood.

i
IV27HUjg
Jan 05, 2014

I tried very hard to like this & to finish it. Alas, I did not.

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