Introduced by Martin Edwards
Illustrated by Mark Thomas
The Locked-Room Mysteries set brings together three towering examples of impossible crimes, with stories by Edgar Wallace, Gaston Leroux and John Dickson Carr. This Folio edition is introduced by celebrated crime novelist and current President of the Detection Club, Martin Edwards, and is illustrated by Mark Thomas.
The Four Just Men by Edgar Wallace
The Mystery of the Yellow Room by Gaston Leroux
The Hollow Man by John Dickson Carr
More ‘howdunnits’ than ‘whodunnits’, these mysteries present crimes that are not just heinous, but also seemingly physically impossible: victims are attacked inside sealed rooms or other inaccessible places, while assailants appear to vanish into thin air. The reader is challenged to unravel the clues and solve the puzzle – before the detective can reveal the truth. This handsome collection brings together three incomparable examples of the genre.
In his introduction to the set, crime novelist and President of the Detection Club Martin Edwards discusses the fascinating history of the genre, from Edgar Allan Poe’s ‘The Murders in the Rue Morgue’ to the role of television in the resurrection of the form. Illustrator Mark Thomas adds a layer of stylish mystique to the set with a series of black and white illustrations.
The Four Just Men by Edgar Wallace is the book that inspired the locked-room movement. Four mysterious vigilantes send a threatening letter to the Foreign Secretary stating that he must rescind his Alien Extradition Bill or he will die at a set time on a set day. Originally published without a solution and offering a £500 reward to those able to explain the mysterious death of Sir Philip Ramon, The Four Just Men has continued to baffle generations of readers since.
The Mystery of the Yellow Room by Gaston Leroux is amongst the first locked-room mysteries, and played a part in inspiring the young Agatha Christie. Reporter Joseph ‘Rouletabille’ investigates an attack on Mademoiselle Stangerson, who has been beaten with a mutton bone and left for dead. Leroux is a master of the tease, providing eager readers with a tantalising variety of clues, suspects and even floor plans of the crime scene.
Often rated the best locked-room mystery of all time, The Hollow Man by John Dickson Carr is a fiendishly clever novel, imbued with a macabre atmosphere and all the portentous gloom of London in winter. How could a murderer walk through a locked door, shoot his victim and then simply disappear? How can a man be gunned down in the street at close quarters without the assailant leaving behind a single footprint in the snow? Dr Gideon Fell sets out to investigate and expose the truth
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