The Tiger in the Smoke

Margery Allingham

Introduced by Alexander McCall Smith
Illustrated by Finn Campbell-Notman

Alexander McCall Smith introduces this golden-age mystery, considered one of the finest ever written. With illustrations by Finn Campbell-Notman.

Published price: US$ 57.95


The Tiger in the Smoke

‘The fog was like a saffron blanket soaked in ice-water. It had hung over London all day’
Considered one of the finest thrillers in the English language, this is the gripping story of a ruthless killer and his victims, hunters and allies. While ranking alongside crime classics such as The Franchise Affair and Cover Her Face, The Tiger in the Smoke is also unusual among golden-age mystery novels for its meditations on human imperfection, in particular the notions of madness and evil. ‘The Smoke’ of the title refers to the ineluctable fog that creeps through the dingy alleyways and secluded squares of post-war London. It also alludes to the city itself, a city in which it is but a step from the safety of a brightly lit living room to a world of secret doorways, hidden basements and deadly intrigue. ‘The Tiger’ is Jack Havoc – malevolent and graceful, with a handsome face whose ‘ruin lay in something quite peculiar’. His ghastly charisma is wonderfully evoked by illustrator Finn Campbell-Notman.

Published in series with Traitor's Purse

Production Details

The Tiger in the Smoke book
  • Bound in paper.
  • Printed with a design by Finn Campbell-Notman.
  • Set in Utopia with Victoria Titling display.
  • 272 pages.
  • Frontispiece and 7 colour illustrations.
  • Book size: 9" x 5¾".

Margery Allingham - a shining light

‘Margery Allingham stands out like a shining light’
Agatha Christie

Though overshadowed by some of her contemporaries, Allingham is a master of the genre. Her characters and settings are beautifully drawn, among them Albert Campion, the reserved, likeable sleuth who appears in 14 of Allingham’s novels and remains her most famous creation. Geoffrey Levett is the hapless but determined fiancé, compared by bestselling author Alexander McCall Smith in his introduction to John Buchan’s Richard Hannay. Campion’s uncle, Canon Avril, is especially moving, with his refusal to abandon his gentle wisdom when he comes face-to-face with Havoc, ‘weeping in his weary rage’. And then there is the street band, a group of misfits, vulnerable and dangerous in equal measure, who share Havoc’s obsession with a nameless ‘treasure’ once spoken of by a comrade in the war. For McCall Smith, Allingham’s skilful depiction of the band says much about ‘the marginal ex-servicemen trying to survive on their wits in an unsympathetic world’. It is both for its ‘vivid characterisation and its social detail’, he writes, that The Tiger in the Smoke remains a classic.


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Review by RikZak on 3rd Nov 2013

Text: Illustrations: Binding: Rating: 5/5

"This book is a must for any one that loves thrillers. Margery Allingham, the author, is a master of the genre. Consider this short representative paragraph, a simple two sentence paragraph from early..." [read more]

Review by anon on 12th Sep 2013

Text: Illustrations: Binding: Rating: 4/5

"I really enjoyed Margery Allingham's dark London story. I'm not sure how you would describe it: mystery/thriller/crime novel. The characters certainly come alive, and the illustrations are perfect fo..." [read more]

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