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Lady Audley's Secret

M. E. Braddon

Book Overview: 

Mary Elizabeth Braddon’s first novel, Lady Audley’s Secret, tells the story of the lovely Lucy Graham, who becomes Lady Audley and who conceals a scandalous secret from her new husband and his family. The plot, which includes madness, bigamy, attempted murder, and seduction, makes this a shocking but highly successful story and a wonderfully absorbing book.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .It was very foolish not to send the address in the telegraphic message," said Robert.

"When people are dying it is not so easy to think of all these things," murmured my lady, looking reproachfully at Mr. Audley with her soft blue eyes.

In spite of Lady Audley's fascination, and in spite of Robert's very unqualified admiration of her, the barrister could not overcome a vague feeling of uneasiness on this quiet September evening.

As he sat in the deep embrasure of a mullioned window, talking to my lady, his mind wandered away to shady Figtree Court, and he thought of poor George Talboys smoking his solitary cigar in the room with the birds and canaries.

"I wish I'd never felt any friendliness for the fellow," he thought. "I feel like a man who has an only son whose life has gone wrong with him. I wish to Heaven I could give him back his wife, and send him down to Ventnor to finish his days in peace."

Still my lady's pretty mus. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I was pleasantly surprised by this read. I liked it so much I read it in two days...it was really hard to put down!

I, like many people when reading this in installments back in 1861 and 1862, was wondering in chapter after chapter what would happen next, and above all in chapter after chapter what w

Lady Audley's Secret is a gorgeous example of the Victorian 'Sensation Novel' which dominated Great Britain during the 1860's and '70s. It includes a unique female mastermind of evil, while also presenting enough evidence for a lively counter argument over who the real villain is. The prose is top-n

whatever could be Lady Audley's secret? could it be... murder? miscegenation? malfeasance? misdirected malevolence ending in tears, tragedy, and general tawdriness? an assumed identity? flatulence? that not-so-fresh feeling? bigamy? bigotry? child abuse? child abandonment? une affaire de coeur? une

This is a sadly forgotten but great 19th century sensation novel that rivals some of Wilkie Collins' best books such as The Woman in White and the Moonstone. Its also one of the first to feature a female villain which wasn't typical of early literature. Nevertheless, this dynamic creates an interest

"What do we know of the mysteries that may hang about the houses we enter?"

I was both intrigued and hesitant to read this mid-nineteenth century work. First of all, I just had to know this huge secret that Lady Audley would presumably be keeping from us! Secondly, this is labeled as a sensation nove

After around fifty pages or so of reading this I was incredibly disappointed. I’d found out what Lady Audley’s secret was. I didn’t really want to read any further. But, that’s what I was meant to think. Her actual secret isn’t revealed to the very end. And, I must say, I was rather surprised. I did

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