The Law and the Lady,
The Leavenworth Case,
The Disastrous Mrs. Weldon,
The biography of Mrs. Weldon has more vivid and unlikely events than the Wilkie Collins novel, and that's a high standard. Collins' Lady is the actor in her own life, both making mistakes and ferreting out the truth, which seems fresh and lively enough for its day; but the truly disastrous Mrs. Weldon had as much vigor and more tragic, real-life flaws. She was important in the reframing of British laws on lunacy and women's rights; she argued many cases herself partly because she was, in fact, talented, and very often because she overestimated her own talents. She never believed she was wrong, and she hardly ever believed she would lose, and she got away with rather more than the strict facts of her life would seem to justify. If looking for something pleasantly scandalous to read on a train, and your own diary won't do, consider that - since he does not write for Household Words - Thompson can be a bit more specific about parts of Weldon's private life than Collins could be about anyone's. Mrs. Weldon's private life involved Gounod and a lengthy lesbian affair and orphans and madhouses, and was documented pretty well, since she was generally in either the courts or the newspapers and also wrote an enormously long autobiography to justify herself.
Green was a bestseller in her day and respected for her fiction's grasp of law, but it's a stiff novel, and even the hero's description of the heroine is not moving. recommends Green's The Affair Next Door, which I will keep looking for.So wrote clew in Book comparisons. , Fiction (19th c.).