This book is much less known than its famous brothers, "The Woman in White" and "The Moonstone" (I have read them both). It was written between them, and I think it is a very worthy companion to the pair. Mr. Collins was the son of a well-known painter and you perceive his gifted eye for describing characters and environments. He also had a great talent for devising plots and producing very vivid, human and interesting characters. So, your reading enjoyment can be very rich and multidimensional. You can almost feel in the background the presence of the writer's very powerful mind behind the story, carefully describing very realistic scenes, with dashes of humor, irony and eccentricities, while keeping you keenly interested for almost 750 pages. Some of the characters and scenes in the book are gems, as the one of the rich and extreme miser, Mr. Noel Vanstone, in the agony of agreeing on the amount to inherit to his lifelong housekeeper, Mrs. Lacomte (who has been almost his mother). And this, while she is dictating to him the terms of his will ! Mrs. Wragge, his swindler husband, Magdalen and the Admiral are greatly portrayed. This is one of the few books that after finished, most probably will keep growing with you, and will keep its attraction in your memory for a long time. Mr. Collins's main works are so high-quality, that you'd be a much more selective reader afterwards. I would recommend also his "Armadale" (this I haven't read yet, but soon will).