by Charles Dickens
How do you write one of the most famous murder mysteries of all time? Here’s one way: You die before your novel is completed, leaving readers to speculate about whodunit to poor Edwin Drood, the titular character who goes missing and is presumed dead.
That was the case with Charles Dickens’ serialized last novel, which was just 50 percent complete when the celebrated author expired in 1870.
Actually, it seems fairly obvious who Drood’s killer is. Clues within the novel and from Dickens’s own notes and conversations with contemporaries point to one likely suspect. Or is the solution so obvious? Is it possible that the mystery of Edwin Drood is the fact that he wasn’t murdered, after all? Could Dickens have been about to pull off a Rod Serling-like twist?
Regardless, it’s a Charles Dickens story. That means most of a reader’s enjoyment derives from the colorful characters and the author’s amusing way with words.
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