Sensation Literature

  • A City Girl

    In April 1888, Friedrich Engels wrote a letter to the English novelist and journalist Margaret Harkness, expressing his appreciation for her first novel, A City…

  • Lady Audley’s Secret – A Drama in Two Acts

    Mary Elizabeth Braddon’s shocking and suspenseful novel Lady Audley’s Secret was one of the most popular examples of the “sensation fiction” craze of the 1860s.…

  • Cometh Up As A Flower

    An important sensation novel, Cometh Up as a Flower made Rhoda Broughton’s reputation and fortune while also attracting harsh criticism. Nell LeStrange, the heroine, is…

  • The Second Mrs Tanqueray

    The Second Mrs. Tanqueray was the theatrical sensation of the London stage in 1893. It established Pinero as the leading English dramatist of serious social…

  • The Woman in White

    As the inscription on his tombstone reveals, Wilkie Collins wanted to be remembered as the “author of The Woman in White,” for it was this…

  • Moths

    First published in 1880, Moths addresses such Victorian taboos as adultery, domestic violence, and divorce in vivid and flamboyant prose. The beautiful young heroine, Vere…

  • Lady Audley’s Secret

    Lady Audley’s Secret (1862) was one of the most widely read novels in the Victorian period. The novel exemplifies “sensation fiction” in featuring a beautiful…

  • Trilby

    Du Maurier’s Trilby was the novel sensation of the 1890s. Du Maurier had spent a good deal of his life as a child and later…

  • East Lynne

    Lady Isabel Carlyle, a beautiful and refined young woman, leaves her hard-working but neglectful lawyer-husband and her infant children to elope with an aristocratic suitor.…

  • Aurora Floyd

    Aurora Floyd is one of the leading novels in the genre known as ‘sensation fiction’—a tradition in which the key texts include Wilkie Collins’s The…