The Daughters of the Night by Edgar Wallace
Created: Sun Feb 13 21:37:50 2011 | Last modified: Wed Jul 20 10:17:49 2011
Edgar Wallace's novels always have an endearing quality about them that is hard to define. Perhaps the fact that his characters are quaint and very British or that his plots always ingeniously designed and well-rounded, draw the reader into the story in stages and end up with unexpected twists and turns. Certainly "The Daughters of the Night" fall into the category of thrillers and it certainly doesn't disappoint in that respect.
The story itself is hard to explain in a few words, but there are the usual Edgar Wallace characters: the hero, the heroine, the suspicious but beautiful woman who is somehow involved in the whole plot, the hard-faced and fiendish villain and a chivalrous one.
The story, despite its apparent initial complexity, flows easily and the reader is well acquainted with the facts by the halfway stage. The pacing is rather quicker than the average Edgar Wallace novel as the novel is fairly short in length. The way in which the villains are finally exposed (in the plot) is a bit of a let down from the initial build-up of tension and despite the action, it feels less than satisfactory. The element of danger and suspense which is always present in Edgar Wallace novels somehow is less emphasized here as the reader is almost sure what will happen in the end once the villains are exposed. However, the identity of the villains has an element of surprise and until that point of the plot when they are exposed, the plot holds the reader's attention.
All in all, a good thriller in the typical Edgar Wallace style which won't fail to satisfy a hardcore Wallace fan or a fan of old-fashioned thrillers. I wouldn't give it a full 5 star rating owing to lack of real plot depth which is a characteristic of longer novels, but it is a quick, light and entertaining read on a rainy day. 4/5.