"The main incident on which the following story turns, is founded on a fact which many readers of these pages will probably recognise as having formed a subject of conversation, a few years back, among persons interested in Literature and Art. I have endeavoured, in writing my little book, to keep the spirit of its title-page motto in view, and tell my “honest tale” as “plainly” as I could — or, in other words, as plainly as if I were only relating it to an audience of friends at my own fireside." -- Wilkie Collins
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English novelist and playwright Wilkie Collins was a prolific writer with a body of work comprising thirty novels, over sixty short stories, more than a dozen plays, and a wide range of non-fiction pieces. Collins is best known for his novels The Woman in White, an early sensation novela genre combining shocking gothic horror with everyday domestic settingsand The Moonstone, which is credited as one of the first modern mystery novels. In the 1850s Collins met Charles Dickens and the two struck up a friendship, which lead to Collins becoming a frequent contributor to Dickens s journals Household Words and All the Year Round. Many of his stories have been adapted for film, including Basil, A Terribly Strange Bed, The Moonstone and The Woman in White. Collins died in 1889 at the age of 65.
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