The Moonstone (1868) by Wilkie Collins is a 19th-century British epistolary novel. It is generally considered to be the first detective novel, and it established many of the ground rules of the modern detective novel. The story was originally serialised in Charles Dickens's magazine All the Year Round. The Moonstone and The Woman in White are widely considered to be Collins's best novels, and Collins adapted The Moonstone for the stage in 1877, although the play was performed for only two months.Colonel Herncastle, an unpleasant former soldier, brings the Moonstone back with him from India where he acquired it by theft and murder during the Siege of Seringapatam. Angry at his family, who shun him, he leaves it in his will as a birthday gift to his niece Rachel, thus exposing her to attack by the stone's hereditary guardians, who will stop at nothing to retrieve it.
Author: William Wilkie Collins
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