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Hide and Seek

Wilkie Collins

Book Overview: 

The artist Valentine Blyth has a very generous heart. He lovingly cares for his invalid wife, rescues a deaf orphan girl from maltreatment in a traveling circus and adopts her, and mentors a young man who gets in trouble with his tyrannical father. The girl, who received the nickname ‚Madonna’, falls in love with the young man, Zack. Because one of Valentine’s biggest fears is that Madonna’s blood relations will one day trace her and take her away from his home, he keeps the little that he knows of her origins a strict secret. One day, Zack befriends a mysterious stranger, who has just returned from years of rough life in the American wilderness. From that moment, the plot thickens, in mid-19th century dramatic style

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .She has already sacrificed herself once to our curiosity; and, really, to ask her now to recur a second time to recollections which I am sure must distress her—"

"It's worse than distressing, indeed, sir, even to think of that dreadful accident," said Mrs. Peckover, "and specially as I can't help taking some blame to myself for it. But if the lady wishes to know how it happened, I'm sure I'm agreeable to tell her. People in our way of life, ma'am—as I've often heard Peggy Burke say—are obliged to dry the tear at their eyes long before it's gone from their hearts. But pray don't think, sir, I mean that now about myself and in your company. If I do feel low at talking of little Mary's misfortune, I can take a look out into the garden there, and see how happy she is—and that's safe to set me right again."

"I ought to tell you first, sir," proceeded the clown's wife, after waiting thoughtfully for a moment or two before she spoke. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I enjoyed Hide and Seek, but the novel wasn't as engaging as Collins's two most famous novels, The Moonstone, and The Woman in White. However, Collins's characterization of Valentine Blyth has to be one of my of his characters. He is by far the best part of the book. Valentine, though an artist, isn

Hide and Seek (1854) is Wilkie Collins's third novel. In 1861 Collins's heavily revised and shortened the novel.

While the plot is quite predictable and with too much coincidence to be believable the story is a page turner nevertheless. It should be remembered that Collin's The Moonstone (1868) is c

Wilkie Collins is one of my favourite classical authors but unfortunately this book didn't match up to some of the others I've read. It was just OK for lack of a better word.

The book's first half concerns a painter who adopts a deaf orphan child from a circus, and the second unravels the mystery of

I always enjoy a Wilkie Collins book.

What an enjoyable read from the 1850's/ I think that Collins could have been a wonderful screenwriter for daytime drama. In effect this book since it was originally published as a serial was the 1850's equivilant of a soap opera.

Hide and Seek is Collins’ third novel and first mystery. The novel neatly divides into two distinct sections, “The Hiding“ and “The Seeking” with an opening chapter about the youth, Zach Thorpe. In the Introduction to the Dover edition of the book, the American Collins’ biographer, Nuel Pharr Davis,

Wilkie Collins's Hide and Seek can be a frustrating novel. It is the third novel by Wilkie Collins and was originally published in 1854. It is written before Collins, Braddon and others launched into the era of the Sensation novel and it is not really a mystery novel in the manner of The Moonstone e

I adore Wilkie Collins. I prefer him to all his Victorian colleagues (O Hardy! My Hardy! Forgive me. It's a tie between you and Wilkie). The man had soul.

Hide and Seek is a tale of love, betrayal, hardship and forgiveness.
It is both very modern and very outdated.
You find yourself appreciating not

I enjoyed this a lot, despite its Dickensian elements (this is early Collins, when he was still learning his craft while very much under Dickens's spell--it is dedicated to Dickens, and substantial parts of it were written while Collins was visiting Dickens). Most Dickensian--other than the array of

Collins' third novel was his first "mystery" novel, but like his next, The Dead Secret, it's not a conventional mystery as we know them today. Still, although there is no detective on the case, as Collins introduced in his most famous novel, The Moonstone, it's still very much a novel about detectio

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