This is my second Wilkie Collins novel – this was the first – I preferred this one.
Here’s the blurb …
“The Moonstone is a page-turner,” writes Carolyn Heilbrun. “It catches one up and unfolds its amazing story through the recountings of its several narrators, all of them enticing and singular.” Wilkie Collins’s spellbinding tale of romance, theft, and murder inspired a hugely popular genre–the detective mystery. Hinging on the theft of an enormous diamond originally stolen from an Indian shrine, this riveting novel features the innovative Sergeant Cuff, the hilarious house steward Gabriel Betteridge, a lovesick housemaid, and a mysterious band of Indian jugglers.
My only complaint was that it was too long. I enjoyed the narrative being told from different characters points of view – they inadvertently reveal much about themselves while moving the plot forward. My favourite section was Miss Clack’s and apparently Wilkie Collins was so under the influence of opium that he didn’t even remember writing it (although when he read it, he thought it was quite good!). This is a detective story (possibly the first?) with all sorts of things going on – murder, love, suicide, mystical Indians, an enormous diamond (stolen from India – does that remind anyone of anything? Koh I Noor perhaps?) and a re-enactment of the crime scene.
and here is the shmoop page