The Mystery of Edwin Drood is a novel that is itself the subject of one of literature’s most enduring mysteries. The story recounts the troubled romance of Rosa Bud and the book’s eponymous character, who later vanishes. Was Drood murdered, and if so by whom? All clues point to John Jasper, Drood’s lugubrious uncle, who coveted Rosa. Or did Drood orchestrate his own disappearance? As Charles Dickens died before finishing the book, the ending is intriguingly ambiguous.
In his Introduction, Matthew Pearl illuminates the 150-year-long quest to unravel The Mystery of Edwin Drood and lends new insight into the novel, the literary milieu of 1870s England, and the private life of Charles Dickens. This Modern Library edition includes new endnotes and a full transcript of “The Trial of John Jasper for the Murder of Edwin Drood,” the 1914 mock court case presided over and argued by the likes of G. K. Chesterton and George Bernard Shaw. Now diehard fans, new readers, and armchair detectives have another opportunity to solve the mystery Dickens took to his grave.
About the Author
Arguably one of the greatest writers of the Victorian era, Charles Dickens is the author of such literary masterpieces as A Tale of Two Cities (1859), A Christmas Carol (1843), David Copperfield (1850), and The Adventures of Oliver Twist (1839), among many others. Dickens' s indelible characters and timeless stories continue to resonate with readers around the world more than 130 years after his death. Dickens was born in 1812 and died in 1870.
Matthew Pearl is the "New York Times" bestselling author of "The Dante Club" and the editor of the Modern Library editions of Dante's Inferno (translated by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow) and Edgar Allen Poe's "The Murder in the Rue Morgue: The Dupin Tales. The Dante Club" has been published in more than thirty languages and forty countries around the world. Pearl is a graduate of Harvard University and Yale Law School and has taught literature at Harvard and at Emerson College. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He can be reached via his website, www.matthewpearl.com.