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Cover of first US edition, from Wikipedia

British author Wilkie Collins turns up on many “best” lists for his fantastic mystery novels of the 19th century. He was among those who pioneered the detective genre. I consider “Woman in White,” published in 1859, to have one of the best villains in fiction. Count Fosco is compelling and complicated, the opposite of a flat character. The novel has a wonderful, deft hand at multiple points of view. “Woman in White” is considered Collins’ best work, but “The Moonstone,” is also fine.