The Mysteries of Udolpho by Ann Radcliffe


Written in 1794, this gothic romance is thought by some to be the origins of the detective novel. It tells the story of Emily St. Aubert, who finds herself under the care of her uncle. Questions and mysteries arise from secrets of her father’s past.

I didn’t finish this one. I was about 120 pages in when I decided to stop, because nothing had happened yet to keep me going. The majority of those first 100 pages chronicles the travels of Emily and her father, describing the vistas in detail. The appearance of Emily’s love interest, Valancourt, made this slightly bearable, but the story moves along so slowly that the thought of going on for another 500+ pages made me cringe.

This one just wasn’t for me.

1) Overall Plot =3
2) Characters = 2
3) Flow/Pace of the story = 1
4) Is the story easy to follow? = 4
5) Overall Enjoyability = 1

Average of score 2.2 out of 5

This particular B&N edition is no longer for sale, so I’ve linked below to the search page which shows all available editions.

Where to buy the book: Amazon | B&N

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