by Charles Dickens
by Ann Radcliffe
The Marquis who owns the dilapidated Abbey, discovers them living on his land, but inexplicably allows them to remain, making a mysterious alliance with Mr. La Motte. Ghoulish skeletons, mysterious manuscripts, and gruesome secret rooms are lying around all over the Abbey, and the dark forest holds secrets of its own.
The friendly Theodore warns Adeline that her life is in danger, but he is called away to his regiment before he can explain or help her. Adeline goes through every kind of disaster and terrifying mishap, fleeing for her life when she is betrayed by those she trusts.
This is Gothic melodrama at its best! I lost count of how many times Adeline fainted, but it must have been more than twenty times. She dissolves into tears, is frozen with terror, collapses under the strain of horror, and is prostrate with grief in every single chapter.
by Arthur Conan Doyle
I thought that Holmes’ character is represented beautifully both through the artwork and the dialogue. His austere personality and furtive energy comes across strongly on every page! Continue reading
by Daphne du Maurier
The writing is expressive and really paints a picture of the setting amidst the dark moors. The story is certainly striking, even though I found the plot fairly predictable.
Mary’s character has a good balance, since she’s plucky but also vulnerable. The other characters are vivid and interesting too, even the awful villains. Each person has such colorful dialogue, descriptions, and body language that they jump off the page into life! I was truly afraid of the villains, truly sorry for the pathetic Aunt Patience, and absolutely disgusted with the nasty smugglers. I could almost smell them, they were so close to life.
Excellent writing and a good tale of mystery and suspense!
by Voltaire, John Everett Butt
The writing is extremely concise and lacking in any detail, so that all the characters are one-dimensional, and the plot is very sparse. Everything moves quickly from one plot point to the next, so that within a few sentences the entire situation has changed. Not much is explained either, leaving a lot of plot holes and gaps in the story. Continue reading