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Jason Hall's Top Book Recommendations

Want to know what books Jason Hall recommends on their reading list? We've researched interviews, social media posts, podcasts, and articles to build a comprehensive list of Jason Hall's favorite book recommendations of all time.


Heart and Science

Wilkie Collins’s later novels are often as concerned with social issues as they are with simple storytelling—but as more and more critics are suggesting, the best of them are as readable and thought-provoking today as they were when they first appeared. Of none is this more true than of his 1883 novel Heart and Science, which Collins himself placed alongside his masterpiece The Woman in White.

Heart and Science turns on the fate of the orphaned Carmina Graywell, who is left in the charge of her aunt and guardian Mrs. Gallilee when her fiancé is forced to take an extended trip to...
Recommended by Jason Hall, and 1 others.

Jason HallIt’s very much a thesis novel: Collins’s 1883 attempt to enter the anti-vivisection debate. (Source)

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Poor Miss Finch

Wilkie Collins’ intriguing story about a blind girl, Lucilla Finch, and the identical twins who both fall in love with her, has the exciting complications of his better known novels, but it also overturns conventional expectations.

Using a background of myth and fairy-tale to expand the boundaries of nineteenth century realist fiction, Collins not only takes a blind person as his central character but also explores the idea of blindness and its implications. His sensitive presentation of the difficulties, disappointments, and occasional delights which follow the recovery of sight...
Recommended by Jason Hall, and 1 others.

Jason HallThis is one of my favourite Collins novels, because it’s very funny and very touching (Source)

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The Moonstone

"The Moonstone is a page-turner", writes Carolyn Heilbrun. "It catches one up and unfolds its amazing story through the recountings of its several narrators, all of them enticing and singular." Wilkie Collins’s spellbinding tale of romance, theft, and murder inspired a hugely popular genre–the detective mystery. Hinging on the theft of an enormous diamond originally stolen from an Indian shrine, this riveting novel features the innovative Sergeant Cuff, the hilarious house steward Gabriel Betteridge, a lovesick housemaid, and a mysterious band of Indian jugglers.

This Modern...
Recommended by Jason Hall, and 1 others.

Jason HallLike The Woman in White, it’s one of the more famous novels by Collins. It’s another with several characters, lots of perspectives, a great mystery at the middle of it (Source)

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Rambles Beyond Railways

[...]experiences on English ground. Take care of this; and who knows into what high society you may not be able to introduce the bearer of the present letter! In spite of his habit of rambling from subject to subject in his talk, much as he rambled from place to place in his travels, he may actually find himself, one day, basking on Folio Classics beneath the genial approval of a Doctor of Divinity, or trembling among Statutes and Reports under the learned scrutiny of a Sergeant at Law! W. C. [...]. less
Recommended by Jason Hall, and 1 others.

Jason HallThe colouring of imagination that Collins throws over the landscape is as interesting as what he witnesses (Source)

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The Woman in White

'In one moment, every drop of blood in my body was brought to a stop... There, as if it had that moment sprung out of the earth, stood the figure of a solitary Woman, dressed from head to foot in white'

The Woman in White famously opens with Walter Hartright's eerie encounter on a moonlit London road. Engaged as a drawing master to the beautiful Laura Fairlie, Walter becomes embroiled in the sinister intrigues of Sir Percival Glyde and his 'charming' friend Count Fosco, who has a taste for white mice, vanilla bonbons, and poison. Pursuing questions of identity and insanity...
Recommended by Lucy Atkins, Jason Hall, and 2 others.

Lucy AtkinsI’ve only read it twice, but it’s lingered in my consciousness: the images and the feel of it. (Source)

Jason HallThe glory of it is you get this story as if it’s a court hearing, everybody is presenting their evidence from their own perspectives (Source)

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