Mary Elizabeth Braddon: Lady Audley's Secret (3130 words)

Lee Anna Maynard (Auburn University Montgomery)
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Mary Elizabeth Braddon's provocatively titled novel, published in three-volume form in 1862, began its literary life rather fitfully, appearing serially in three English magazines from 1861 through 1863, with Braddon pausing in its composition to start another novel, Aurora Floyd. Despite this tenuous beginning, Lady Audley's Secret would become an early and influential example of an emerging sub-genre of Victorian literature, sensation fiction.

The immediate and overwhelming popularity of Lady Audley's Secret can be linked to contents as explosive and sensational as the novel's title suggests. Victorian readers found a multitude of deliciously forbidden secrets between its covers, including a secret …

Citation: Maynard, Lee Anna. "Lady Audley's Secret". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 10 May 2007 [, accessed 02 March 2021.]

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