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"Oh, my God! to think of that kind-hearted, lovely young woman, who brings happiness with her wherever she goes, bringing terror to me! Terror when her pitying eyes look at me; terror when her kind voice speaks to me; terror when her tender hand touc
hes mind!" ' Porthgenna Tower on the remote western Cornish coast. Moments before her death, Mrs Treverton dictates a secret to her maid, never to be passed to her husband as she had instructed. Fifteen years later, when Mrs Treverton's daughter, Ros
amond, returns to Porthgenna with her blind husband, Leonard, she is intrigued by the strange and seemingly disturbed Mrs Jazeph's warning not to enter the Myrtle Room in the ruined north wing. Strong-minded and ingenious, Rosamond's determined detec
tive work uncovers shocking and unsettling truths beyond all expectation. A mystery of unrelenting suspense and psychologically penetrating characters, The Dead Secret explores the relationship between a fallen woman, her illegitimate daughter, and b
uried secrets in a superb blend of romance and Gothic drama. Wilkie Collins's fifth novel, The Dead Secret anticipates the themes of his next novel, The Woman in White in its treatment of mental illness, disguise and deception, and the dispossession
of lost identity. Yet a series of comic figures offsets the tension, from the dyspeptic Mr Phippen to the perpetually smiling governess, Miss Sturch. Displaying the talent and energy which made Collins the most popular novelist of the 1860s, The Dead
Secret represents a crucial phase in Collins's rise as a mystery writer, and was his first full-length novel written specifically for serialization.