Invitation to the Drood readalong

We are offering a warm invitation to one and all to join us in a Drood readalong as we countdown to the opening of the Drood Inquiry.

Dickens originally published The Mystery of Edwin Drood, like all of his novels, in instalments. Thanks to the generosity of the University of Aberdeen, The Drood Inquiry now have digital scans of all six instalments which we will be sharing each month from April to September to mimic their first release back in 1870. It’s a rare opportunity to see Dickens’s story in its original format, even down to the monthly adverts, and truly get a feel for what it might have been like to first read it 144 years ago.

Meanwhile, over here at Cloisterham Tales we’ll be posting regular blogs, and inviting comments from readers as the story develops, to see how our perception of the story and characters is affected by the monthly structure (so for those who have read it before, please remember: no spoilers!). There will also be posts along the way to give a fuller picture of the context of Drood and its early reception.There really is no better way to understanding the book.

So whether you’ve never read it, or think you know it backwards (Doord Niwde fo Yretsym Eht), please join us, one and all, both here and at from 1 April 2014 as we travel the streets of Cloisterham in the company of Master Edwin Drood and friends.

Published by Pete Orford

I'm course director of the MA in Charles Dickens Studies at the University of Buckingham in conjunction with the Dickens Museum in London. I am currently editing Pictures from Italy for the Oxford Dickens collection, and I'm Chief Investigator for The Drood Inquiry ( My book "The Mystery of Edwin Drood: Charles Dickens’s unfinished novel and our endless attempts to end it" was published by Pen and Sword Books in 2018.

Join the Conversation


  1. Welcome aboard to you both! I’m looking forward to reading your thoughts and first impressions as we read through the story.

  2. Thanks Sven! Mind, this is just the beginning – we’re going to be adding a lot more content between now and September…

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