AFTER DARK BY WILKIE COLLINS
EPUB BOOKS (E-BOOK), 2014
I downloaded this free e-book: HTTPS://WWW.EPUBBOOKS.COM/BOOK/842/AFTER-DARK
BLURB FROM THE COVER
A series of tales supposed to be told to a portrait-painter by his sitters; the framework tells us how he came to think of publishing the stories thus collected; the introductions describe the circumstances under which the tales were told. These portions have a delicate every-day interest. The tales are stories of adventure, well varied, and often striking in the incidents, or with thrilling situations; and are as pleasant reading as a novel reader could desire.
LEAVES FROM LEAH’S DIARY.
26th February, 1827.—The doctor has just called for the third time to examine my husband’s eyes. Thank God, there is no fear at present of my poor William losing his sight, provided he can be prevailed on to attend rigidly to the medical instructions for preserving it. These instructions, which forbid him to exercise his profession for the next six months at least, are, in our case, very hard to follow. They will but too probably sentence us to poverty, perhaps to actual want; but they must be borne resignedly, and even thankfully, seeing that my husband’s forced cessation from work will save him from the dreadful affliction of loss of sight. I think I can answer for my own cheerfulness and endurance, now that we know the worst. Can I answer for our children also? Surely I can, when there are only two of them. It is a sad confession to make, but now, for the first time since my marriage, I feel thankful that we have no more.
This was my first time reading Wilkie Collins. I really liked the way this collection was structured. Collins uses a story-within-a-story format. After Dark uses a framing story of an artist forced to take some time out because his eye-sight has been damaged. He uses this time to tell his wife some stories about his more interesting clients. The aim is to turn the stories into a book and get it published to make some money until his eyesight recovers. This frame worked really well. The stories varied from very good to just okay. I like the prologue Collins offers to each story as well. After Dark is a mixed collection.
THE TRAVELER’S STORY OF A TERRIBLY STRANGE BED: I really enjoyed this story. Collins offers a mystery tale of a sinister plot in a remote inn to rob an innocent man of his extensive gambling wins. This story was well written and quite enjoyable.
THE LAWYER’S STORY OF A STOLEN LETTER: Collins offers another enjoyable tale. This is also a mystery tale with some interesting twists. I thought this story was really well written.
THE FRENCH GOVERNESS’S STORY OF SISTER ROSE: This was the weakest story in the collection. Collins takes us to the French Revolution. I found this story very long-winded and boring in some places. Nowhere near as good at the first two tales.
THE ANGLER’S STORY of THE LADY OF GLENWITH GRANGE: Collins is back on form with this tale of secrecy, murder, intrigue and betrayal. I really liked this one.
THE NUN’S STORY OF GABRIEL’S MARRIAGE: This was another slow tale that was dull in a few places. Not as good as other tales in the collection.
THE PROFESSOR’S STORY OF THE YELLOW MASK: I also didn’t really enjoy this story and found it slow and tedious in places.