The Mystery of a Hansom Cab, part 2!

Tea, Tonic & Toxin

Nov 30 2022 • 1 hr 3 mins

Australia’s first literary sensation, The Mystery of a Hansom Cab sold hundreds of thousands of copies worldwide upon publication. Set in the charming and deadly streets of Melbourne, this 1886 thriller highlights class and social issues as a crime is committed by an unknown assassin.

  1. Legitimacy — Frettlby was married to Rosanna, and Sal was conceived in wedlock. Madge is Frettlby’s illegitimate daughter. How did this turn of events strike you, and what do you think about the lengths people go to protect Frettlby’s “good name”?

  2. Fate — Men discovered the deity Nemesis wasn’t “altogether useless as a scapegoat upon which to lay the blame of their own shortcomings, so they created a new deity called Fate and laid any misfortune which happened to them to her charge. Her worship is still very popular, especially among lazy and unlucky people, who never bestir themselves on the ground that … their lives are already settled by Fate.” Thoughts?

  3. Plot Holes — Was Frettlby ever going to tell his father that he married Rosanna and had a child? Why didn’t Rosanna tell her mother she was married? Why did Rosanna allow Frettlby to believe she and their child were dead, and why didn’t he confirm these stories? Why did Moreland wait so long to start blackmailing Frettlby?

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