Literary Characters Wanted Dead or Alive

Literary Characters Wanted Dead or Alive

If you thoroughly enjoy a good and psychologically baffling murder story, you do not have to only search the mystery fiction in our library collection.  Our library has many classic novels that contain many of the qualities of an absorbing murder story.

The murderers in the three classic novels that I will feature share many similar life situations, characteristics, and alike in how they reacted to their own crime.   These items are what these three murderers share.

  1. They were members of either a working class or destitute family.
  2. They either had to make their own living or help support their immediate family at young ages.
  3. They were involved in complicated love triangles.
  4. They were not criminals at the beginning of the novels.
  5. They left the scene of their crime.

These novels took place in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. You may feel some sympathy for these characters, because their circumstances were catalysts for their murders. Public human resources seemed to be more limited in these earlier centuries than they are today, and you might regret that these characters did not live in the 21st century.  Did they truly receive what they deserved, and did they leave the scene of their crime out of desperation?  The murder punishments in the earlier centuries were either various types of the death penalty, or extremely harsh living conditions.  Take the below quiz to test your knowledge of these literary criminals on the lam. See if you can match the correct novel with the sentence about the murderers. View the listed correct answers after you take the quiz.

  1. The murderer pre-meditated the murderous deed.
  2. The murderer actually killed with a murder weapon.
  3. The murderer tried to rescue the victim but they were too late.
  4. The murderer tried to cover any indication of guilt.
  5. The murderer made absolutely no attempt to conceal the crime.
  6. This novel mentioned a penal colony as an alternative to capital punishment.

A. American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser

B. Adam Bede by George Elliot

C.Tess of the D’urbervilles by Thomas Hardy.

  1. A.
  2. C.
  3. B
  4. A.
  5. C
  6. B

An American Tragedy

Adam Bede

Tess of the D'Urbervilles