Wilkie Collins may have penned this thriller long ago in 1868, but I have to say just like most thrillers when it winds up, it winds up! The novel actually starts out pretty strong and intriguing, the premise helping immensely that a mysterious, very large diamond (not an actual moonstone) is given to a young lady, Rachel, on her 18th birthday. The stone is obtained by an uncle through less than honorable ways and brought to England from India. So because of this, there are 3 Hindu priests who feel that the stone should be returned to it’s rightful place, in the forehead of an idol so that it may wax and wane in brilliance with the phases of the moon.
Rachel wears the stone at her birthday party and surprise, surprise, it’s stolen. Then the mystery begins! Who stole it? Was it the Hindu priests? Another guest? The maid? Perhaps the butler did it. And of course, no mystery would be complete without a love triangle intertwined. The birthday girl Rachel and her cousin (I know, eww) along with another suitor find themselves trying to solve and not solve the disappearance of the large yellow diamond.
As the novel begins to wind up I found the actual conclusion of the story a little unbelievable yet annoying at the same time. I would guess that in 1868 that it would be considered a shocker and completely blow someone away, but I found it to be a little more of a let down. There were a few twists in there in the subplot story lines to keep it interesting but I since the novel leading up to the big reveal had been so gripping, I found the ending pales in comparison and the story deserved a bigger and much more grandiose surprise.
That being said, it is definitely a great mystery that should not be missed. This novel is perfect for a rainy Saturday afternoon that slowly fades into evening.
On the Bookalicious scale: 4-Satiated. A most tasty read, yet not overfilling!