K.'s Reviews > Lady Audley's Secret

Lady Audley's Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon
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Nov 07, 2015

really liked it
bookshelves: 2015, classics, classics-club, own-it-hard-copy, setting-uk, audience-adult
Read 2 times. Last read November 8, 2015 to November 23, 2015.

I first read this book back in my undergraduate days. I went through a big Wilkie Collins phase after studying The Woman in White for first year English, and so I took to loitering around the 823.8 section of the university library to see what else I could dig up of a similar ilk. Obviously, Braddon and Collins weren't far apart on the shelves. Plus, one of the Wilkie Collins books I read included an "if you like this, try _____" section at the back. This was one of the books listed.

I remember at the time thinking that it didn't really compare to Collins' writing, and I was probably right. Mary Elizabeth Braddon isn't QUITE in the same class as Wilkie Collins. But despite being the lesser writer of the two, she still manages to spin one HELL of a story.

Lady Audley's Secret revolves around Robert Audley, a young barrister. Accompanied by his friend George, he pays a visit to his uncle, who's recently married a much younger woman. When George disappears mysteriously shortly thereafter - with a trail of clues leading to suggest that he may have returned to the Australian goldfields - Robert gets it into his head that his new aunt is involved.

So he takes it upon himself to start investigating Lady Audley's past. He rapidly discovers that things don't entirely add up, especially when he takes into consideration the circumstances of George's disappearance and the fact that George left without leaving any plans in place for his young son. As the story progresses, Robert finds himself in an increasingly dangerous quest for the truth.

I really enjoyed this book. It was definitely a page turner as far as I was concerned, full of great characters and exciting adventures. Sure, Lady Audley's secret turns out to be a little bit of an anticlimax. But Lady Audley herself is a fabulous and incredibly conniving character, who'd probably be classified as a sociopath in the modern world. And I honestly can't work out if I think her fate was well deserved or not.

On the whole, it was a very enjoyable and occasionally creepy mystery, and I'd definitely recommend checking it out, especially if you like Wilkie Collins' writing.
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
November 7, 2015 – Shelved
November 7, 2015 –
page 35
7.71%
November 8, 2015 – Started Reading
November 8, 2015 –
page 52
11.45%
November 9, 2015 –
page 75
16.52%
November 10, 2015 –
page 99
21.81%
November 11, 2015 –
page 125
27.53%
November 12, 2015 –
page 147
32.38%
November 13, 2015 –
page 183
40.31%
November 14, 2015 –
page 204
44.93%
November 15, 2015 –
page 226
49.78%
November 16, 2015 –
page 250
55.07%
November 17, 2015 –
page 277
61.01%
November 18, 2015 –
page 305
67.18%
November 19, 2015 –
page 338
74.45%
November 20, 2015 –
page 353
77.75%
November 21, 2015 –
page 375
82.6%
November 22, 2015 –
page 409
90.09%
November 23, 2015 – Shelved as: 2015
November 23, 2015 – Shelved as: classics
November 23, 2015 – Shelved as: classics-club
November 23, 2015 – Shelved as: own-it-hard-copy
November 23, 2015 – Finished Reading
August 7, 2016 – Shelved as: setting-uk
August 17, 2016 – Shelved as: audience-adult

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