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Madame Midas

When the irresistibly attractive French convict Gaston Vandeloup escapes to the goldfields of Ballarat, he sets out to meet the remarkable Madame Midas. Charming, intelligent and forthright, she finds her fortune in Ballarat’s fabulous mines and returns to marvellous Melbourne where she lives in magnificent style. But, in that city of con men and opportunists, her wealth makes her prey to deceit and crime, destined to end in murder… First published in 1888, Madame Midas is the best-selling companion-piece to Fergus Hume’s phenomenally successful The Mystery of the Hansom Cab. Madame Midas herself is based on Alice Cornwell, a woman whose life was as strange as the fiction she inspired. In his thrilling mystery, introduced here by Simon Caterson, Hume unforgettably dramatises the story of an enigmatic woman in a society enslaved by wealth.‘A rare treasure… Madame Midas herself is one of the most memorable Victorian heroines.'Stephen Knight

Fergus Hume
About the Author

Fergus Hume was born in England in 1859. His family soon immigrated to New Zealand, where Hume qualified as a lawyer. He was admitted to the bar in 1885 and moved to Melbourne in the same year.

Desperate to become a playwright but having no success, Hume decided to write a murder novel instead. When he couldn’t find a publisher for The Mystery of...

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Text publication date:
30 January 2017
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Praise for Fergus Hume
andMadame Midas

‘An excellent example of a classic 19th Century mystery novel.’

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