Image of Gaston Leroux


Lifetime: 1868 - 1927 Passed: ≈ 97 years ago


Journalist, Author



Gaston Leroux

Gaston Louis Alfred Leroux was a French journalist and author of detective fiction.

In the English-speaking world, he is best known for writing the novel The Phantom of the Opera (Le Fantôme de l'Opéra, 1910), which has been made into several film and stage productions of the same name, notably the 1925 film starring Lon Chaney, and Andrew Lloyd Webber's 1986 musical. His 1907 novel The Mystery of the Yellow Room is one of the most celebrated locked-room mysteries.

Leroux was born in Paris in 1868 and died in 1927 in Nice. After schooling in Normandy, he moved to Paris, where he completed his studies in law in 1889. He inherited millions of francs and lived wildly until he nearly reached bankruptcy. In 1890, he began working as a court reporter and theater critic for L'Écho de Paris. His most important journalism came when he began working as an international correspondent for the Paris newspaper Le Matin. He was present at, and covered, the 1905 Russian Revolution.

Another case at which he was present involved the investigation and in-depth coverage of the former Paris Opera (presently housing the Paris Ballet). The basement contained a cell that held prisoners of the Paris Commune.

He left journalism in 1907 and began writing fiction. In 1919, he and Arthur Bernède formed their own film company, Société des Cinéromans, publishing novels and turning them into films. He first wrote a mystery novel titled Le mystère de la chambre jaune (1908; English title: The Mystery of the Yellow Room), starring the amateur detective Joseph Rouletabille. Leroux's contribution to French detective fiction is considered a parallel to those of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in the United Kingdom and Edgar Allan Poe in the United States.

Leroux published his most famous work, The Phantom of the Opera, as a serial in 1909 and 1910, and as a book in 1910 (with an English translation appearing in 1911).

Leroux was made a Chevalier de la Legion d'honneur in 1909.

Books by Gaston Leroux

The Mystery of the Yellow Room Cover image

The Mystery of the Yellow Room

Fiction Novel
Mystery Foul-play

One of the first locked room mysteries, The Mystery of the Yellow Room focuses on a supposedly impossible crime which has been committed within a locked room. The novel was initially published in the French periodical L’illustration, and was later pu...

The Phantom of the Opera Cover image

The Phantom of the Opera

Romance Horror Fiction Novel
Gothic Mystery Revenge Supernatural Violence Jealousy

A masterly mix of romance, drama, mystery, suspense, love and jealousy, The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux will haunt you long after you've turned the last page. Today the world knows it by Andrew Lloyd-Webber's long running musical on stage...

The Secret of the Night  Cover image

The Secret of the Night

Fiction Novel
Detective Truth Mystery Tradition Nihilism Life Russia

The Secret of the Night or Rouletabille and the Tsar is a 1913 mystery novel by the French writer Gaston Leroux. It is the third in his series of novels featuring the fictional detective Joseph Rouletabille, following on from The Mystery of the Yello...

The Dark Road: Further Adventures of Chéri-Bibi Cover image

The Dark Road: Further Adventures of Chéri-Bibi

Gothic Truth Prison Mystery Escape Adventure Suspense Criminals

It is a sequel to the original "Chéri-Bibi" and follows the further adventures of the eponymous character, a convict who has been wrongfully accused of murder and is on the run. The novel is set in the early 1900s and takes place in France, where Ch...

The Man with the Black Feather Cover image

The Man with the Black Feather

Young Mystery Thriller Suspense Journey Life Betrayal Women

It follows the story of a man who receives a letter from a stranger with a black feather, and embarks on a quest to find out the identity of the sender. As the protagonist delves deeper into the mystery, he encounters a series of fascinating charact...

El fantasma de la ópera Cover image

El fantasma de la ópera

Mystery Tragedy Romance Suspense Obsession Secret Classic Literature Gothic Fiction

En las sombras de la Ópera de París se esconde un misterio que despierta fascinación y terror: "El fantasma de la ópera" de Gaston Leroux revela los secretos ocultos tras el telón, llevando al lector a un mundo de pasión, obsesión y tragedia. En "El...

Mystère de la chambre jaune Cover image

Mystère de la chambre jaune

Le mystère est grand. On a essayé de tuer mademoiselle Stangerson dans une chambre fermée de l'intérieur, aucun accès visible, volets clos... Qui a voulu perpétrer ce meurtre et surtout, comment a-t-il procédé ? (Résumé par Naf Brusa)Book Coordinator...

Fauteuil Hante Cover image

Fauteuil Hante

L'intrigue se déroule sous la coupole de l'Académie française. À la suite de la mort de Mgr d'Abbeville, chaque nouveau candidat à l'immortalité qui est désigné pour occuper son fauteuil, meurt lors du discours d'hommage à son prédécesseur. Hippolyte...