Wilkie Collins created the very first detective to appear in a novel-length mystery, Sergeant Cuff in The Moonstone (1868). Cuff is called to an English country house to investigate the disappearance of a sacred diamond. Charles Dickens began a rival tale with the Mystery of Edwin Drood (1870). Edwin is engaged to a young, sheltered Rosa, but his devoted uncle, Jasper, loves her … in a mad, menacing manner. Both mysteries are built on dark secrets, double lives, and – how germane today – opium addictions. These classic mysteries are the subjects of intriguing Masterpiece Theatre adaptations.
Books: The Moonstone, Wilkie Collins; The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Charles Dickens