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The short story is often viewed as an inferior relation to the Novel. But it is an art in itself. To take a story and distil its essence into fewer pages while keeping character and plot rounded and driven is not an easy task. Many try and many fail. In this series we look at short stories from many of our most accomplished writers. Miniature masterpieces with a lot to say. In this volume we examine some of the short stories of Wilkie Collins. William Wilkie Collins was born on January 8th 1824. Bullied as a child his escape was to tell the bully a story each night before going to sleep. It proved to be quite an education. Lauded as the Father of the Detective novel, Collins was the author of The Moonstone and The Woman In White among the thirty novels he wrote. A great friend and colleague of Charles Dickens (who regularly published him in his own magazines) Collins was also a playwright and prolific author of short stories. A sufferer of gout he used and became addicted to opium to combat the pain. Writing at the time of the Franco-Prussian War in 1870 he stated, "I begin to believe in only one civilising influence the discovery one of these days of a destructive agent so terrible that War shall mean annihilation and men's fears will force them to keep the peace." Collins died on September 23, 1889 at 82 Wimpole Street, following a paralytic stroke. He is buried in Kensal Green Cemetery in London. Collected here for your reading pleasure are a selection of chilling, disturbing, but always entertaining stories from a man at the top of his craft and always aware of his effect on the minds of us mere mortals. Many of these stories are also available as an audiobook from our sister company Word Of Mouth. Many samples are at our youtube channel The full volume can be purchased from iTunes, Amazon and other digital stores. They are read for you by Richard Mitchley & Ghizela Rowe

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