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Books in the series: Detective Club Crime Classics

The Groote Park Murder

The Groote Park Murder

Author: Freeman Wills Crofts Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/03/2020

From a murder in South Africa to the tracking down of a master criminal in northern Scotland, this is a true classic of Golden Age detective fiction by one of its most accomplished champions. When a signalman discovers a mutilated body inside a railway tunnel near Groote Park, it seems to be a straightforward case of a man struck by a passing train. But Inspector Vandam of the Middeldorp police isn't satisfied that Albert Smith's death was accidental, and he sets out to prove foul play in a baffling mystery which crosses continents from deepest South Africa to the wilds of northern Scotland, where an almost identical crime appears to have been perpetrated. The Groote Park Murder was the last of Freeman Wills Crofts' standalone crime novels, foreshadowing his iconic Inspector French series and helping to cement his reputation (according to his publishers) as 'the greatest and most popular detective writer in the world'. Like The Cask, The Ponson Case and The Pit-Prop Syndicate before it, here were a delightfully ingenious plot, impeccable handling of detail, and an overwhelming surprise 'curtain' from a masterful crime writer on the cusp of global success. This Detective Club classic is introduced with an essay by Freeman Wills Crofts, unseen since 1937, about 'The Writing of a Detective Novel'.

The Cask

The Cask

Author: Freeman Wills Crofts Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/03/2020

From the Collins Crime Club archive, the seminal first novel by Freeman Wills Crofts, once dubbed 'The King of Detective Story Writers' and recognised as one of the 'big four' Golden Age crime authors. The unloading of a consignment of French wine from the steamship Bullfinch is interrupted by a gruesome discovery in a broken cask leaking sawdust and gold sovereigns. But when the shipping clerk returns with the police, the cask and its macabre contents have gone. Following the clues to Paris, Inspector Burnley of Scotland Yard enlists the help of the genial French detective M. Lefarge to check motives and alibis in their hunt for evidence of a particularly fiendish murder. This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by Freeman Wills Crofts himself in a unique preface from 1946 about The Cask's origins.

The Pit-Prop Syndicate

The Pit-Prop Syndicate

Author: Freeman Wills Crofts, John Curran Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/03/2020

From the Collins Crime Club archive, the third standalone novel by Freeman Wills Crofts, dubbed 'The King of Detective Story Writers'. Seymour Merriman's holiday in France comes to an abrupt halt when his motorcycle starts leaking petrol. Following a lorry to find fuel, he discovers that it belongs to an English company making timber pit-props for coal mines back home. His suspicions of illegal activity are aroused when he sees the exact same lorry with a different number plate - and confirmed later with the shocking discovery of a body. What began as amateur detective work ends up as a job for Inspector Willis of Scotland Yard, a job requiring tenacity, ingenuity and guile . . . Freeman Wills Crofts' transition from civil engineer on the Irish railways to world-renowned master of the detective mystery began with The Cask when he was fully 40 years old; but it was his third novel, the baffling The Pit-Prop Syndicate, that was singled out by his editors in 1930 as the first for inclusion in Collins' prestigious new series of reprints 'for crime connoisseurs'. This Detective Club classic is introduced by John Curran, author of The Hooded Gunman, and includes the bonus of an exclusive short story by Crofts, 'Danger in Shroude Valley'.

The Lyttleton Case

The Lyttleton Case

Author: R. A. V. Morris, Douglas A. Anderson Format: Hardback Release Date: 21/01/2020

The latest in the series of classic crime novels from the vaults of HarperCollins for the detective connoisseur is the only novel by the Welsh writer R.A.V. Morris. The chance discovery of a young man's body floating in a Sussex stream provides the first clue to the mysterious disappearance of Sir James Lyttleton, who sent his daughter a curt wire announcing his departure for America before completely vanishing. But this is no ordinary missing persons inquiry - when Sir James's body turns up inside another man's coffin, journalist James Dawson and Chief Inspector Candlish of Scotland Yard find themselves on the trail of a particularly ruthless and ingenious murderer. This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by author and editor Douglas A. Anderson, whose authoritative books on Kenneth Morris led to the discovery of R.A.V. Morris's true identity.

The Rasp

The Rasp

Author: Philip MacDonald, Tony Medawar Format: Hardback Release Date: 21/01/2020

A victim is bludgeoned to death with a woodworker's rasp in this first case for the famed gentleman detective Anthony Gethryn - the latest in a new series of classic detective novels from the vaults of HarperCollins. Ex-Secret Service agent Anthony Gethryn is killing time working for a newspaper when he is sent to cover the murder of Cabinet minister John Hoode, bludgeoned to death in his country home with a wood-rasp. Gethryn is convinced that the prime suspect, Hoode's secretary Alan Deacon, is innocent, but to prove it he must convince the police that not everyone else has a cast-iron alibi for the time of the murder. This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by crime fiction expert and writer Tony Medawar, who investigates the forgotten career of one of the Golden Age's finest detective story writers.

Nightmare

Nightmare

Author: Lynn Brock, Rob Reef Format: Hardback Release Date: 21/01/2020

Driven to madness by the cruelty of a small group of people, a young novelist sets about taking murderous revenge. Simon Whalley is an unsuccessful novelist who is gradually going to pieces under the strain of successive setbacks. Brooding over his troubles, and driven to despair by the cruelty of his neighbours, he decides to take his revenge in the only way he knows how - by planning to murder them . . . Lynn Brock made his name in the 1920s and 30s with the popular 'Colonel Gore' mysteries, winning praise from fans and critics including Dorothy L. Sayers and T. S. Eliot. In 1932, however, Brock abandoned the formulaic Gore for a new kind of narrative, a 'psychological thriller' in the vein of Francis Iles' recent sensation, Malice Aforethought. Advertised by Collins as 'one of the most remarkable books that we have ever published', the unconventional and doom-laden Nightmare provided readers with a disturbing portrayal of what it might take to turn an outwardly normal man into a cold-blooded murderer. This Detective Story Club Classic is introduced by Rob Reef, author of the 'John Stableford' Golden Age mysteries, who finds philosophy at the heart of Brock's landmark crime novel.

The Mystery of the Skeleton Key

The Mystery of the Skeleton Key

Author: Bernard Capes, G. K. Chesterton, Hugh Lamb Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 21/01/2020

The fourth in a new series of classic detective stories from the vaults of HarperCollins involves a tragic accident during a shooting party. As the story switches between Paris and Hampshire, the possibility of it not being an accident seems to grow more likely. The Detective Story Club , launched by Collins in 1929, was a clearing house for the best and most ingenious crime stories of the age, chosen by a select committee of experts. Now, almost 90 years later, these books are the classics of the Golden Age, republished at last with the same popular cover designs that appealed to their original readers. The Mystery of the Skeleton Key, first published in 1919, has the distinction of being the first detective novel commissioned and published by Collins, though it was Bernard Capes' only book in the genre, as he died shortly before it was published. This is how the Detective Club announced their edition ten years later: Mr Arnold Bennett, in a recent article, criticised the ad hoc characterisation and human interest in the detective novels of to-day. The Mystery of the Skeleton Key contains, in addition to a clever crime problem and plenty of thrills, a sensible love story, humour, excellent characterisation and strong human interest. The scenes are laid in Paris and Hampshire. The story deals with a crime committed in the grounds of a country house and the subsequent efforts of a clever young detective the track down the perpetrator. The Selection Committee of The Detective Story Club have no hesitation in recommending this splendid thriller as one which will satisfy the most exacting reader of detective fiction. This new edition comes with a brand new introduction by Capes expert and anthologist, Hugh Lamb.

The Mystery of the Skeleton Key

The Mystery of the Skeleton Key

Author: Bernard Capes, G. K. Chesterton, Hugh Lamb Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 13/06/2019

The Skeleton Key (1919) was the first detective novel published by Collins, ushering in the Golden Age, the Crime Club, and 100 years of remarkable crime fiction that would follow. A body is discovered after a shooting party in the grounds of a country house in Hampshire. The police are called in, and a clever young detective, Sergeant Ridgway, begins to unravel a much more complicated and brutal case of murder than was first suspected. But has he met his match with Le Sage, a chess-playing Baron, who is convinced that the answers lie not in Hampshire but in Paris? After 20 years of writing in various genres, The Skeleton Key was Bernard Capes' crowning achievement, as he died shortly after completing the book. Introduced by Hugh Lamb, whose anthology The Black Reaper resurrected Capes' reputation as one of the best horror writers of his generation, the book also includes its original tribute to Capes by G. K. Chesterton, author of the Father Brown mysteries.

The Middle Temple Murder

The Middle Temple Murder

Author: J. S. Fletcher, Nigel Moss Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/01/2019

A special 100th anniversary edition of J.S. Fletcher's best detective novel, recognised as one of the Golden Age's earliest and most successful classic stories. An unidentified elderly gentleman is found bludgeoned to death in London's Middle Temple, that enclave of justice between Fleet Street and the Thames. After due investigation the police conclude that it was merely a case of robbery. But Frank Spargo, a young journalist who senses a scoop, and Inspector Rathbury of New Scotland Yard, who doesn't, soon unearth fresh clues and join forces to solve an intricate and intriguing mystery. Joseph Smith Fletcher was a British writer and fellow of the Royal Historical Society who had studied law before turning to journalism. Dubbed 'the Dean of Mystery Writers', his literary career spanned some 200 books, with the seminal The Middle Temple Murder acclaimed as one of the genre's defining novels, popular on both sides of the Atlantic with readers, critics and US Presidents alike. This Detective Club classic is introduced by the detective fiction historian Nigel Moss, celebrating 100 years since the book's first publication. It includes the bonus of Fletcher's earlier short story 'The Contents of the Coffin', his precursor to the full-length The Middle Temple Murder.

Murder in the Bookshop

Murder in the Bookshop

Author: Carolyn Wells, Curtis Evans Format: Hardback Release Date: 29/11/2018

Book 50 in the Detective Club Crime Classics series is Carolyn Wells' Murder in the Bookshop, a classic locked room murder mystery which will have a special resonance for lovers and collectors of Golden Age detective fiction. Includes a bonus murder story: 'The Shakespeare Title-Page Mystery'. When Philip Balfour is found murdered in a New York bookstore, the number one suspect is his librarian, a man who has coveted Balfour's widow. But when the police discover that a book worth $100,000 is missing, detective Fleming Stone realises that some people covet rare volumes even more highly than other men's wives, and embarks on one of his most dangerous investigations. A successful poet and children's author, Carolyn Wells discovered mystery fiction in her forties and went on to become one of America's most popular Golden Age writers. Penning 82 detective novels between 1909 and her death in 1942, she was mourned in 1968 by the great John Dickson Carr as one of mystery fiction's 'lost ladies now well lost', and remains undeservedly neglected 50 years later. Murder in the Bookshop is a story laced with criminality, locked rooms and bookish intricacies that any bibliophile will find irresistible. This Detective Club hardback is introduced by award-winning writer and authority on Golden Age detective fiction, Curtis Evans, and includes 'The Shakespeare Title-Page Mystery', a murderous tale of literary shenanigans that was one of the last pieces of detective fiction which Carolyn Wells ever published.

The Deductions of Colonel Gore

The Deductions of Colonel Gore

Author: Lynn Brock, Rob Reef Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/11/2018

This brand new edition of the first novel to feature the officer and gentleman detective Colonel Wickham Gore includes the first ever reprint of the only Colonel Gore novella, Too Much Imagination. Colonel Gore is reunited with old friends at a dinner party to mark his return from service in Africa, but is shocked to discover that one of them has fallen victim to a callous blackmailer. When the antagonist is found dead, Gore finds that civilian life can be as challenging as anything in the army, especially when one of your friends may have become a killer . . . but which one? Once famous in the West End and on Broadway for plays written as 'Anthony Wharton', Dublin-born Alexander McAllister had become a publican in Surrey when, as 'Lynn Brock', his writing career took off again with the creation of country detective Colonel Wickham Gore. Described by Rose Mcaulay as 'a very clever writer: a gift for drawing life-like people and a lively sense of dramatic incident', Brock became a pillar of the Golden Age with his Colonel Gore whodunits and pioneering psychological novels including the lurid Nightmare. This Detective Club classic is introduced by Rob Reef, author of the John Stableford mysteries, and for the first time reprints the only Colonel Gore novella, Too Much Imagination, a country house murder story from a rare 1926 American pulp magazine.

The Shop Window Murders

The Shop Window Murders

Author: Vernon Loder, Nigel Moss Format: Hardback Release Date: 18/10/2018

The delight of Christmas shoppers at the unveiling of a London department store's famous window display turns to horror when one of the mannequins is discovered to be a dead body... Mander's Department Store in London's West End is so famous for its elaborate window displays that on Monday mornings crowds gather to watch the window blinds being raised on a new weekly display. On this particular Monday, just a few weeks before Christmas, the onlookers quickly realise that one of the figures is in fact a human corpse, placed among the wax mannequins. Then a second body is discovered, and this striking tableau begins a baffling and complex case for Inspector Devenish of Scotland Yard. Vernon Loder's first book The Mystery at Stowe had endeared him in 1928 as 'one of the most promising recruits to the ranks of detective story writers'. Inspired by the glamour of the legendary Selfridges store on London's Oxford Street, The Shop Window Murders followed, an entertaining and richly plotted example of the Golden Age deductive puzzle novel, one of his best mysteries for bafflement and ingenuity. This Detective Club classic is introduced by Nigel Moss, who looks at how Loder's books are still acclaimed today by reviewers for being 'as different from the standard whodunits of his colleagues as champagne is to soda water.'

A Voice Like Velvet

A Voice Like Velvet

Author: Donald Henderson Format: Hardback Release Date: 20/08/2018

A sensational wartime crime novel about a BBC announcer who abuses his position to commit crimes against the rich and famous... By day Ernest Bisham is a velvet-voiced announcer for the BBC; the whole country recognises the sound of his meticulous pronouncements. By night, however, Mr Bisham is a cat-burglar, careless about his loot, but revelling in the danger and excitement of his running contest with Scotland Yard. But as he gets away with more and more daring escapades, there will come a time when he goes too far . . . When Donald Henderson's Mr Bowling Buys a Newspaper caused something of a sensation, his publishers were keen to capitalise on their author's popularity, quickly reissuing The Announcer (originally published under his pen-name `D. H. Landels') with the more alluring title A Voice Like Velvet. Despite a small edition of just 3,000 copies, it was his best reviewed work, as suspenseful and offbeat as his earlier success. This Detective Club classic includes an introduction by The Golden Age of Murder's Martin Edwards, who explores Henderson's own BBC career and the long established tradition of books about gentlemen crooks. The book also includes a rare Henderson short story, the chilling `The Alarm Bell'.

The Bravo of London And 'the Bunch of Violets'

The Bravo of London And 'the Bunch of Violets'

Author: Ernest Bramah Format: Hardback Release Date: 20/08/2018

The classic crime novel featuring blind detective Max Carrados, whose popularity rivalled that of Sherlock Holmes, complete with a new introduction and an extra short story. In his dark little curio shop Julian Joolby is weaving an extravagant scheme to smash the financial machinery of the world by flooding the Oriental market with forged banknotes. But this monster of wickedness has not reckoned on Max Carrados, the suave and resourceful investigator whose visual impairment gives him heightened powers of perception that ordinary detectives overlook. Max Carrados was a blind detective whose stories by Ernest Bramah appeared from 1914 alongside Sherlock Holmes in the Strand Magazine, in which they often had top billing. Described by George Orwell as among 'the only detective stories since Poe that are worth re-reading', the 25 stories were collected in three hugely popular volumes, culminating in a full-length novel, The Bravo of London (1934), in which Carrados engages in a battle of wits against a fiendish plot that threatens to overthrow civilisation itself. This Detective Club classic is introduced by Tony Medawar, who investigates the impact on the genre of Bramah's blind detective and the relative obscurity of this, the only Max Carrados novel. This edition also includes the sole uncollected short story 'The Bunch of Violets'. As well as on the page, the Max Carrados stories have been a firm favourite on television and film, played over the years by (among others) Robert Stephens, Simon Callow and Pip Torrens, and read on audio by Arthur Darvill and Stephen Fry.

The Mystery of the Yellow Room

The Mystery of the Yellow Room

Author: Gaston Leroux Format: Hardback Release Date: 08/08/2018

One of the defining novels of the entire crime genre, Gaston Leroux's The Mystery of the Yellow Room has inspired readers and writers including Agatha Christie and John Dickson Carr, and is now republished in hardback in the Detective Club series with a brand new introduction. Breaking down her door in response to the sounds of a violent attack and a gunshot, Mademoiselle Stangerson's rescuers are appalled to find her dying on the floor, clubbed down by a large mutton bone. But in a room with a barred window and locked door, how could her assailant have entered and escaped undetected? While bewildered police officials from the Surete begin an exhaustive investigation, so too does a young newspaperman, Joseph Rouletabille, who will encounter more impossibilities before this case can be closed. The Mystery of the Yellow Room by Gaston Leroux, best remembered today as the author of The Phantom of the Opera, has been deservedly praised for more than a century as a defining book in the 'impossible crime' genre, as readable now as when it first appeared in French in 1907. This Detective Club classic includes an introduction by John Curran, who discusses how the book impressed and influenced a young Agatha Christie, was lauded by genre giants including John Dickson Carr, Ellery Queen and Julian Symons, and remains to this day one of the most effective and enjoyable locked room mysteries ever written.

The Millionaire Mystery

The Millionaire Mystery

Author: Fergus Hume, Peter Haining Format: Hardback Release Date: 18/06/2018

Fergus Hume was renowned as the bestselling mystery writer of Victorian times after his first book, The Mystery of a Hansom Cab, broke all records. In 1901 he returned to form with this ingenious tale, selected to represent Hume's prolific output by Collins' Detective Club panel in 1930. Cicero Gramp was, according to himself, a 'professor of elocution and eloquence' - to anyone else he was no more than an engaging and extremely craft vagabond. Hence it was that he found himself awakened from his sleep in the corner of the churchyard, the cheapest available lodging, by men's voices at an hour past midnight. Two dark figures silhouetted for an instant against the white mausoleum where lay the body of the millionaire Richard Marlow. Then the turning of a key in the iron door of the vault. Silence. Two figures moving back into the night carrying a sinister burden - what Gramp guessed was the body of Marlow. But when a search was made in the vault, Marlow's coffin was found shut, and not empty: only the body in it was not Marlow's but that of another man - murdered! And that is only the first puzzle in The Millionaire Mystery . . .

The Rogues' Syndicate The Maelstrom

The Rogues' Syndicate The Maelstrom

Author: Frank Froest Format: Hardback Release Date: 17/05/2018

This exciting thriller by the late Frank Froest, himself a detective of international fame, will satisfy the most exacting of detective story connoisseurs. Against a familiar London background we have here a tale of breath-taking adventure - knifing, arson, racing-taxicabs, and shooting-to-kill. Lost in a London fog, young Jimmie Hallett is accosted by a frightened woman who hands him a package and flees. Within hours, he is being questioned about the murder of the girl's father and a dangerous international conspiracy. Can genial detective Weir Menzies, even with all the resources of Scotland Yard behind him, succeed in outwitting a faceless gang of organised thieves and killers? Frank Froest, the highly decorated Superintendent of Scotland Yard's C.I.D., began his retirement from the Metropolitan Police by writing The Grell Mystery, acclaimed as the first crime novel to incorporate authentic police procedures. With George Dilnot, co-author of the story collection The Crime Club, Froest wrote one more novel, the ambitious and thrilling The Rogues' Syndicate, published in 1916 and also released as a silent movie, Millionaire Hallet's Adventure. The book was republished in April 1930 by the Detective Story Club, but was inadvertently sourced from an abridged, Americanised version called The Maelstrom. This Detective Club classic restores the full text of the British first edition, and includes an introduction by the Detective Story Club's original series editor, F. T. Smith. (This book is COMPLETE AND UNABRIDGED, despite what some retailers have put in their listings.)

Below the Clock

Below the Clock

Author: J V Turner Format: Hardback Release Date: 19/04/2018

A classic Golden Age detective novel set at the heart of Westminster, when the murder of the Chancellor of the Exchequer threatens to topple the whole House of Cards... Many highly dramatic and historic scenes have been enacted below the clock of Big Ben, but none more sensational than on that April afternoon when, before the eyes of a chamber crowded to capacity for the Budget Speech, the Chancellor fell headlong to the floor with a resounding crash. For the first time a murder had been committed in the House of Commons itself - and Amos Petrie faced the toughest case of his career. In Below the Clock, John Victor Turner - a journalist who as David Hume had become known as 'the new Edgar Wallace' for creating Britain's first hardboiled detective series - returned to classic Golden Age writing with an ingenious whodunit set at the heart of the establishment, a novel that did the unthinkable by turning Parliament into a crime scene and all its Members into murder suspects. This Detective Club classic is introduced by David Brawn, who looks at the distinguished crime-writing career of J. V. Turner and his alter egos Nicholas Brady and David Hume, who achieved remarkable success with nearly 50 books in only 14 years.

The Pit-Prop Syndicate

The Pit-Prop Syndicate

Author: Freeman Wills Crofts Format: Hardback Release Date: 19/03/2018

From the Collins Crime Club archive, the third standalone novel by Freeman Wills Crofts, dubbed `The King of Detective Story Writers'. Seymour Merriman's holiday in France comes to an abrupt halt when his motorcycle starts leaking petrol. Following a lorry to find fuel, he discovers that it belongs to an English company making timber pit-props for coal mines back home. His suspicions of illegal activity are aroused when he sees the exact same lorry with a different number plate - and confirmed later with the shocking discovery of a body. What began as amateur detective work ends up as a job for Inspector Willis of Scotland Yard, a job requiring tenacity, ingenuity and guile . . . Freeman Wills Crofts' transition from civil engineer on the Irish railways to world-renowned master of the detective mystery began with The Cask when he was fully 40 years old; but it was his third novel, the baffling The Pit-Prop Syndicate, that was singled out by his editors in 1930 as the first for inclusion in Collins' prestigious new series of reprints `for crime connoisseurs'. This Detective Club classic is introduced by John Curran, author of The Hooded Gunman, and includes the bonus of an exclusive short story by Crofts, `Danger in Shroude Valley'.

The Grell Mystery

The Grell Mystery

Author: Frank Froest, Tony Medawar Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/01/2018

The latest in a new series of classic detective stories from the vaults of HarperCollins involves the murder of a notorious criminal in the home of a famous millionaire. But there are no clues, no evidence. The police are convinced that someone may have just committed the perfect crime. The Detective Story Club , launched by Collins in 1929, was a clearing house for the best and most ingenious crime stories of the age, chosen by a select committee of experts. Now, almost 90 years later, these books are the classics of the Golden Age, republished at last with the same popular cover designs that appealed to their original readers. The Grell Mystery was first published in 1913 and selected as one of the launch titles for the Detective Club in 1929. It was written by former Scotland Yard Chief Inspector Frank Froest, who had turned in retirement to writing successful and authentic crime novels. If you like a thriller with plenty of exciting incident and a clever plot you will like this first-rate detective novel by Frank Froest. Chief Inspector Foyle was confronted with the most bewildering case of his career when Goldenburg, the crook, was found foully murdered in the flat of Robert Grell, millionaire. Here was what appeared to be a perfect crime without a clue that led anywhere. But Foyle was more than a match for the arch-criminal and his masterly deduction and determination brought him a splendid triumph.

Called Back

Called Back

Author: Hugh Conway Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/01/2018

The first in a new series of classic detective stories from the vaults of HarperCollins involves a blind man who stumbles across a murder. As he has not seen anything, the assassins let him go, but he finds it is impossible to walk away from murder. The Detective Story Club , launched by Collins in 1929, was a clearing house for the best and most ingenious crime stories of the age, chosen by a select committee of experts. Now, almost 90 years later, these books are the classics of the Golden Age, republished at last with the same popular cover designs that appealed to their original readers. By the purest of accidents the man who is blind accidentally comes on the scene of a murder. He cannot see what is happening but he can hear. He is seen by the assassins who, on discovering him to be blind, allow him to go without harming him. Soon afterwards he recovers his sight and later falls in love with a mysterious woman who is in some way involved in the crime.... The mystery deepens and only after a series of memorable thrills is the tangled skein unravelled. Called Back by Hugh Conway, a pseudonym for Frederick John Fargus, was first published in 1883. It was a huge success, selling 350,000 copies in its first year, leading to a highly acclaimed stage play the following year. This new edition is introduced by novelist and crime writing expert, Martin Edwards, author of The Golden Age of Murder.

The Moonstone

The Moonstone

Author: Wilkie Collins, G. D. H. Cole, Margaret Cole Format: Hardback Release Date: 28/12/2017

Exactly 150 years since its publication in 1868, this reissue of Collins' popular Detective Club edition of The Moonstone offers crime fiction fans the chance to read the book that is acclaimed as the very first detective novel in the English language. At a party celebrating her eighteenth birthday, Rachel Verinder wears the stunning yellow diamond she unexpectedly inherited from her uncle, unaware that it was plundered from a sacred Indian shrine fifty years earlier. When the jewel goes missing later that night, suspicions are raised and accusations fly in all directions. Sifting through divergent accounts of what happened, the indomitable Sergeant Cuff must find the Moonstone and the truth about its mysterious disappearance. Recognised as the very first detective novel in the English language, The Moonstone (1868) earned Wilkie Collins the reputation of the godfather of the classic English detective story, with Dorothy L. Sayers declaring, 'Nothing human is perfection, but The Moonstone comes about as near perfection as anything of the kind ever can.' For 150 years its intricate locked-room puzzle and multiple narrators have influenced generations of mystery authors. This Detective Club classic reproduces Collins' slightly abridged version of the novel, originally designed to make the long nineteenth-century text more accessible. It is introduced by the iconic crime writing duo G.D.H. and M. Cole, who analyse the popularity of Wilkie Collins' groundbreaking sensation novel.

The Rynox Mystery

The Rynox Mystery

Author: Philip MacDonald Format: Hardback Release Date: 20/11/2017

A classic Golden Age crime novel, and the first time Philip MacDonald wrote a crime novel without a detective. `Rynox' is at that point where one injudicious move, one failure of judgement, one coincidental piece of bad luck will wreck it. So why would anyone send more than a million pounds in one-pound notes to Mr Salisbury of the Naval, Military and Cosmopolitan Assurance Corporation? Who would shoot F.X. Benedik, the senior partner of the firm, through the head in his study? And where is the choleric Mr Marsh, who had an appointment with F.X. on the night of his death? Rynox is on the edge of big things. But the edge of big things is a narrow edge. And narrow edges are slippery . . . Philip MacDonald's Rynox is an engrossing murder mystery set in the business world, a crime novel without a detective in which murder and big business are inextricably combined. Beginning with the Epilogue and ending with the Prologue, it is a subtle and exciting book by one of the greatest masters of the mystery story. This Detective Club classic includes a rare introduction by author Philip MacDonald himself, never before published in the UK, and also `The Wood-for-the-Trees', the only short story to feature his series detective, Anthony Gethryn.

Nightmare

Nightmare

Author: Lynn Brock, Rob Reef Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/10/2017

Driven to madness by the cruelty of a small group of people, a young novelist sets about taking murderous revenge. Simon Whalley is an unsuccessful novelist who is gradually going to pieces under the strain of successive setbacks. Brooding over his troubles, and driven to despair by the cruelty of his neighbours, he decides to take his revenge in the only way he knows how - by planning to murder them . . . Lynn Brock made his name in the 1920s and 30s with the popular 'Colonel Gore' mysteries, winning praise from fans and critics including Dorothy L. Sayers and T. S. Eliot. In 1932, however, Brock abandoned the formulaic Gore for a new kind of narrative, a 'psychological thriller' in the vein of Francis Iles' recent sensation, Malice Aforethought. Advertised by Collins as 'one of the most remarkable books that we have ever published', the unconventional and doom-laden Nightmare provided readers with a disturbing portrayal of what it might take to turn an outwardly normal man into a cold-blooded murderer. This Detective Story Club Classic is introduced by Rob Reef, author of the 'John Stableford' Golden Age mysteries, who finds philosophy at the heart of Brock's landmark crime novel.

Beware of Johnny Washington Based on `Send for Paul Temple'

Beware of Johnny Washington Based on `Send for Paul Temple'

Author: Francis Durbridge, Melvin Barnes Format: Hardback Release Date: 05/10/2017

Republished for the first time since 1951, Beware of Johnny Washington is Francis Durbridge's clever reworking of the very first Paul Temple radio serial using his new characters, the amiable Johnny Washington and newspaper columnist Verity Glyn. Includes as a bonus the first Paul Temple short story, `A Present for Paul'. When a gang of desperate criminals begins leaving calling cards inscribed `With the Compliments of Johnny Washington', the real Johnny Washington is encouraged by an attractive newspaper columnist to throw in his lot with the police. Johnny, an American `gentleman of leisure' who has settled at a quiet country house in Kent to enjoy the fishing, soon finds himself involved with the mysterious Horatio Quince, a retired schoolmaster who is on the trail of the gang's unscrupulous leader, the elusive `Grey Moose'. Best known for creating Paul Temple for BBC radio in 1938, Francis Durbridge's prolific output of crime and mystery stories, encompassing plays, radio, television, films and books, made him a household name for more than 50 years. A new radio character, `Johnny Washington, Esquire', hit the airwaves in 1949, leading to the publication of this one-off novel in 1951. This Detective Club classic is introduced by writer and bibliographer Melvyn Barnes, author of Francis Durbridge: A Centenary Appreciation, who reveals how Johnny Washington's only literary outing was actually a reworking of Durbridge's own Send for Paul Temple.

The Passing of Mr Quinn

The Passing of Mr Quinn

Author: G. Roy McRae, Mark Aldridge Format: Hardback Release Date: 14/09/2017

Reprinted for the first time in almost 90 years, this original novelisation of the very first Agatha Christie film is a unique record of the Queen of Crime's movie debut and a bold attempt to turn one of her favourite short stories into a thrilling silent movie. Who poisoned the cruel and sinister Professor Appleby? Derek Capel, his neighbour, in love with the Professor's wife, Eleanor? Vera, the house-parlourmaid, Appleby's mistress? Or was it Eleanor Appleby herself? All three could be reasonably suspected of a motive which would prompt them to poison the most hateful villain who ever crossed the pages of fiction . . . The first ever Agatha Christie film was a 1928 black and white silent movie, loosely based on her first 'Harley Quin' story. Although no script or print of the film survives, this rare novelisation from the same year is a unique record of Christie's first association with the motion picture industry - now in its remarkable tenth decade with the release of Kenneth Branagh's Murder on the Orient Express. This new Detective Club edition includes an introduction by film and television historian Mark Aldridge, author of the authoritative Agatha Christie On Screen (2016), who reveals why the film's harshest critic was Agatha Christie herself.

The Ponson Case

The Ponson Case

Author: Freeman Wills Crofts, Dolores Gordon-Smith Format: Hardback Release Date: 05/09/2017

From the Collins Crime Club archive, the forgotten second novel by Freeman Wills Crofts, once dubbed `The King of Detective Story Writers'. When the body of Sir William Ponson is found in the Cranshaw River near his home of Luce Manor, it is assumed to be an accident - until the evidence points to murder. Inspector Tanner of Scotland Yard discovers that those who would benefit most from Sir William's death seem to have unbreakable alibis, and a mysterious fifth man whose footprints were found at the crime scene is nowhere to be found . . . This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by Dolores Gordon-Smith, author of the Jack Haldean Golden Age mysteries.

The Mayfair Mystery 2835 Mayfair

The Mayfair Mystery 2835 Mayfair

Author: Frank Richardson Format: Hardback Release Date: 05/09/2017

The first in a new series of classic detective stories from the vaults of HarperCollins involves a disappearing corpse, a supernatural theory, and a genuinely shocking finale. The Detective Story Club , launched by Collins in 1929, was a clearing house for the best and most ingenious crime stories of the age, chosen by a select committee of experts. Now, almost 90 years later, these books are the classics of the Golden Age, republished at last with the same popular cover designs that appealed to their original readers. This most entertaining detective story is concerned with an amazing crime. The body of a wealthy man is discovered by his valet. The valet hurried to a friend of the dead man to tell him of the tragedy. They return to find the body gone! The motive of the murder becomes a deeper mystery still, and no clue seems to lead anywhere. Little by little, however, evidence is built up round a theory, and clever detective work triumphs in the end. For ingenuity and dramatic situations The Mayfair Mystery is hard to beat. First published in 1907 as 2835 Mayfair, the book had caught the imagination of the reading public for its thrilling twists, its wit and imagination, and was chosen to be one of the first 12 classic books released by the Club. This new edition comes with a brand new introduction about the history of the Detective Club by HarperCollins' editor, David Brawn.

The Mystery of the Skeleton Key

The Mystery of the Skeleton Key

Author: Bernard Capes, G. K. Chesterton, Hugh Lamb Format: Hardback Release Date: 05/09/2017

The fourth in a new series of classic detective stories from the vaults of HarperCollins involves a tragic accident during a shooting party. As the story switches between Paris and Hampshire, the possibility of it not being an accident seems to grow more likely. The Detective Story Club , launched by Collins in 1929, was a clearing house for the best and most ingenious crime stories of the age, chosen by a select committee of experts. Now, almost 90 years later, these books are the classics of the Golden Age, republished at last with the same popular cover designs that appealed to their original readers. The Mystery of the Skeleton Key, first published in 1919, has the distinction of being the first detective novel commissioned and published by Collins, though it was Bernard Capes' only book in the genre, as he died shortly before it was published. This is how the Detective Club announced their edition ten years later: Mr Arnold Bennett, in a recent article, criticised the ad hoc characterisation and human interest in the detective novels of to-day. The Mystery of the Skeleton Key contains, in addition to a clever crime problem and plenty of thrills, a sensible love story, humour, excellent characterisation and strong human interest. The scenes are laid in Paris and Hampshire. The story deals with a crime committed in the grounds of a country house and the subsequent efforts of a clever young detective the track down the perpetrator. The Selection Committee of The Detective Story Club have no hesitation in recommending this splendid thriller as one which will satisfy the most exacting reader of detective fiction. This new edition comes with a brand new introduction by Capes expert and anthologist, Hugh Lamb.

The Perfect Crime The Big Bow Mystery

The Perfect Crime The Big Bow Mystery

Author: Israel Zangwill, John Curran Format: Hardback Release Date: 05/09/2017

The first in a new series of classic detective stories from the vaults of HarperCollins is the world's first locked-room mystery, a seemingly impossible crime story as powerful as any that have copied the scenario since. The Detective Story Club , launched by Collins in 1929, was a clearing house for the best and most ingenious crime stories of the age, chosen by a select committee of experts. Now, almost 90 years later, these books are the classics of the Golden Age, republished at last with the same popular cover designs that appealed to their original readers. Originally published as The Big Bow Mystery in 1891, and re-published by the Detective Club to coincide with a new film version called 'The Perfect Crime', Israel Zangwill's novel invented the concept of the 'locked room mystery' and influenced almost every crime writer thereafter. 'A man is murdered for no apparent reason. He has no enemies and there seemed to be no motive for anyone murdering him. No clues remained and the instrument with which the murder was committed could not be traced. The door of the room in which the body was discovered was locked and bolted on the inside, both windows were latched, and there was no trace of any intruder. The greatest detectives in the land were puzzled. Here indeed was the perfect crime, the work of a master mind. Can you solve the problem which baffled Scotland Yard for so long, until at last the missing link in the chain of evidence was revealed?' This new edition includes a brand new introduction by the Golden Age crime expert, Dr John Curran, author of 'Agatha Christie's Secret Notebooks'.

Trent's Own Case

Trent's Own Case

Author: E. C. Bentley, Martin Edwards Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/08/2017

The second novel from the celebrated author of one of the most famous mystery classics ever written, Trent's Last Case. James Randolph is murdered early one evening and his body is found a few hours later. When the police arrive they discover that Randolph's safe has been ransacked and discarded wrapping paper litters his bedroom floor. Perhaps by chance or perhaps by design, Trent seems to have been the last person, other than the murderer, to see Randolph alive. But this is only one aspect amongst many which connect Trent with the murder and stimulate his interest: his friend Inspector Bligh is the detective in charge of the investigation, and then a long-time friend readily and perplexingly confesses his guilt. As much as he respects the abilities of Inspector Bligh, Trent's personal knowledge has him doubting the confession and intent on finding the truth.

Trent's Last Case

Trent's Last Case

Author: E. C. Bentley, John Curran, Dorothy L. Sayers Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/08/2017

Written in reaction to what Bentley perceived as the sterility and artificiality of the detective fiction of his day, Trent's Last Case features Philip Trent, an all-too-human detective who not only falls in love with the chief suspect but reaches a brilliant conclusion that is totally wrong. Trent's Last Case begins when millionaire American financier Sigsbee Manderson is murdered while on holiday in England. A London newspaper sends Trent to investigate, and he is soon matching wits with Scotland Yard's Inspector Murth as they probe ever deeper in search of a solution to a mystery filled with odd, mysterious twists and turns. Called by Agatha Christie one of the best detective stories ever written, Trent's Last Case delights with its flesh-and-blood characters, its naturalness and easy humor, and its style, which, as Dorothy Sayers has noted, ranges from a vividly coloured rhetoric to a delicate and ironical literary fancy.

Trent Intervenes

Trent Intervenes

Author: E. C. Bentley, Ben Ray Redman Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/08/2017

Twelve stories from the celebrated author of one of the most famous mystery classics ever written, Trent's Last Case. Philip Trent is an artist, a journalist, and an urbane unraveller of highly problematical crimes. Here the unshakable sleuth appears in twelve tales of misadventure, where the crimes that he investigates range from fraud and embezzlement to criminal assault and murder, yet they all succumb to his adept methods even if the criminal sometimes escapes. Trent Intervenes affirms Bentley's reputation as an author of the first rank and displays his ability to write equally well in the short story form.

The Lyttleton Case

The Lyttleton Case

Author: R. A. V. Morris, Douglas A. Anderson Format: Hardback Release Date: 18/05/2017

The latest in the series of classic crime novels from the vaults of HarperCollins for the detective connoisseur is the only novel by the Welsh writer R.A.V. Morris. The chance discovery of a young man's body floating in a Sussex stream provides the first clue to the mysterious disappearance of Sir James Lyttleton, who sent his daughter a curt wire announcing his departure for America before completely vanishing. But this is no ordinary missing persons inquiry - when Sir James's body turns up inside another man's coffin, journalist James Dawson and Chief Inspector Candlish of Scotland Yard find themselves on the trail of a particularly ruthless and ingenious murderer. This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by author and editor Douglas A. Anderson, whose authoritative books on Kenneth Morris led to the discovery of R.A.V. Morris's true identity.

The Groote Park Murder

The Groote Park Murder

Author: Freeman Wills Crofts Format: Hardback Release Date: 20/04/2017

From a murder in South Africa to the tracking down of a master criminal in northern Scotland, this is a true classic of Golden Age detective fiction by one of its most accomplished champions. When a signalman discovers a mutilated body inside a railway tunnel near Groote Park, it seems to be a straightforward case of a man struck by a passing train. But Inspector Vandam of the Middeldorp police isn't satisfied that Albert Smith's death was accidental, and he sets out to prove foul play in a baffling mystery which crosses continents from deepest South Africa to the wilds of northern Scotland, where an almost identical crime appears to have been perpetrated. The Groote Park Murder was the last of Freeman Wills Crofts' standalone crime novels, foreshadowing his iconic Inspector French series and helping to cement his reputation (according to his publishers) as `the greatest and most popular detective writer in the world'. Like The Cask, The Ponson Case and The Pit-Prop Syndicate before it, here were a delightfully ingenious plot, impeccable handling of detail, and an overwhelming surprise `curtain' from a masterful crime writer on the cusp of global success. This Detective Club classic is introduced with an essay by Freeman Wills Crofts, unseen since 1937, about `The Writing of a Detective Novel'.

The Adventuress

The Adventuress

Author: Arthur B. Reeve Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/03/2017

Marking 100 years since publication, The Adventuress was the first full-length novel to feature 'scientific detective' Craig Kennedy, who was dubbed 'the American Sherlock Holmes' and the first fictional detective to use forensic science. Who killed Marshall Maddox of Maddox Munitions, Inc., the inventors of the top secret telautomaton? Was his death retribution for a double life, or was it due to the covetousness of some schemer? Even Craig Kennedy is challenged by the diabolical scientific inventiveness and ruthlessness at the centre of the crime - and by Paquita, the mysterious adventuress . . . Arthur B. Reeve (1880-1936) was a New York author and criminologist whose creation, the scientific detective Craig Kennedy, became famous as 'the American Sherlock Holmes'. Reeve's cutting-edge stories, newspaper serials and movies about Craig Kennedy made him the most popular detective writer of the era, and The Adventuress was his first full-length novel for Harper & Brothers, published in 1917 as part of the company's centenary year celebrations. This Detective Club classic is introduced by publisher David Brawn, who examines the rise and fall of Arthur B. Reeve, whose bestselling fiction was credited as introducing forensic science to real police work, yet 100 years later has been all but forgotten.

The Silk Stocking Murders

The Silk Stocking Murders

Author: Anthony Berkeley, Tony Medawar Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/02/2017

A classic Golden Age crime novel, and one of the first to feature a serial killer. Investigating the disappearance of a vicar's daughter in London, the popular novelist and amateur detective Roger Sheringham is shocked to discover that the girl is already dead, found hanging from a screw by her own silk stocking. Reports of similar deaths across the capital strengthen his conviction that this is no suicide cult but the work of a homicidal maniac out for vengeance - a desperate situation requiring desperate measures. Having established Roger Sheringham as a brilliant but headstrong young sleuth who frequently made mistakes, trusted the wrong people and imbibed considerable liquid refreshment, Anthony Berkeley took his controversial character into much darker territory with The Silk Stocking Murders, a sensational novel about gruesome serial killings by an apparent psychopath bent on targeting vulnerable young women.

The Wychford Poisoning Case

The Wychford Poisoning Case

Author: Anthony Berkeley, Tony Medawar Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/02/2017

One of the earliest psychological crime novels, back in print after more than 80 years. Mrs Bentley has been arrested for murder. The evidence is overwhelming: arsenic she extracted from fly papers was in her husband's medicine, his food and his lemonade, and her crimes are being plastered across the newspapers. Even her lawyers believe she is guilty. But Roger Sheringham, the brilliant but outspoken young novelist, is convinced that there is `too much evidence' against Mrs Bentley and sets out to prove her innocence. Credited as the book that first introduced psychology to the detective novel, The Wychford Poisoning Case was based on a notorious real-life murder inquiry. Written by Anthony Berkeley, a founder of the celebrated Detection Club who also found fame under the pen-name `Francis Iles', the story saw the return of Roger Sheringham, the Golden Age's breeziest - and booziest - detective.

The Conjure-Man Dies: A Harlem Mystery

The Conjure-Man Dies: A Harlem Mystery

Author: Rudolph Fisher, Stanley Ellin Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/01/2017

The first known mystery novel written by an African-American, originally published in 1932. When the body of N'Gana Frimbo, the African conjure-man, is discovered in his consultation room, Perry Dart, one of Harlem's ten black police detectives, is called in to investigate. Together with Dr Archer, a physician from across the street, Dart is determined to solve the baffling mystery, helped and hindered by Bubber Brown and Jinx Jenkins, local boys keen to clear themselves of suspicion of murder and undertake their own investigations. The Conjure-Man Dies (1932) was the very first detective novel written by an African-American. A distinguished doctor and accomplished musician and dramatist, Rudolph Fisher was one of the principal writers of the Harlem Renaissance, but died in 1934 aged only 37. With a complex and gripping plot, vividly drawn characters and unique cultural elements, Fisher's witty novel is a genuine crime classic from one of the most exciting eras in the history of black fiction. THIS DETECTIVE STORY CLUB CLASSIC includes an archival introduction by New York crime writer Stanley Ellin, plus Fisher's last published story, `John Archer's Nose', in which Perry Dart and Dr Archer return to solve the case of a young man murdered in his own bed.

Murder Gone Mad

Murder Gone Mad

Author: Philip MacDonald, L. C. Tyler Format: Hardback Release Date: 29/12/2016

The first Golden Age detective novel to feature a serial killer with no rational motive - and surely impossible for Scotland Yard to solve? A long knife with a brilliant but perverted brain directing it is terrorising Holmdale - innocent people are being done to death under the very eyes of the law. After every murder a business-like letter arrives announcing that another `removal has been carried out', and Inspector Pike of Scotland Yard has nothing to go on but the evidence of the bodies themselves and the butcher's own bravado. With clear thinking impossible in the face of such a breathless killing spree, the police make painfully slow progress: but how do you find a maniac who has no rational motive? Philip MacDonald had shown himself in The Noose and The Rasp to be a master of the detective novel. In Murder Gone Mad he raised the stakes with the first Golden Age crime novel to feature a motiveless serial killer prompted only by blood lust - inspired by the real-life case in 1929 of the Dusseldorf Monster - and this time without the familiar Anthony Gethryn on hand to reassure the reader. This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by L. C. Tyler, Chair of the Crime Writers Association and author of the award-winning `Elsie and Ethelred' crime novels and the John Grey historical mysteries.

The Maze

The Maze

Author: Philip MacDonald Format: Hardback Release Date: 29/12/2016

The ultimate murder mystery - can you find the murderer before the detective? Maxwell Brunton was found dead in his study - murdered beyond doubt. There were ten people in the house on the night of the murder, and at least seven of them had an adequate motive for murdering him. But Anthony Gethryn has only the evidence given at the Coroner's inquest to work with. In other words YOU, the reader, and HE, the detective, are upon equal footing. HE solves the mystery. Can YOU? The Maze, first published in 1932, is Philip MacDonald's contribution to the conception of the totally logical puzzle - an exercise in ratiocination, as Poe called it - which so preoccupied detective story writers in the `Golden Age' of the 1920s and '30s. Written in the form of a court transcript, it is the ultimate puzzle novel, an absolutely fair test of the reader's ability as a detective . . . an enthralling story - one of Philip MacDonald's best. This Detective Story Club classic includes an introduction by Julian Symons, who selected The Maze for the Crime Club's 1980 Jubilee reprint series, celebrating the best of 50 golden years of crime publishing.

The Big Four

The Big Four

Author: Agatha Christie, Karl Pike Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/12/2016

A special edition of Agatha Christie's early Poirot adventure novel containing the original 12-part short story version The Man Who Was Number Four , unseen since 1924. The Big Four is the most formidable crime syndicate of all time. A sinister Chinaman, a multi-millionaire, a beautiful Frenchwoman and `The Destroyer' are terrorising the world with their fiendish genius. Only Hercule Poirot's sensational methods of deduction stand in their way of world domination, and after adventures as strange as the Arabian nights, Poirot runs them to earth at last in a cave in the Dolomites. The astonishing success of The Murder of Roger Ackroyd put Agatha Christie under enormous pressure to deliver another Poirot book at a time of intense personal turmoil for the author. Suffering from writer's block, and with the help of her brother-in-law, Campbell Christie, she reluctantly dug out The Man Who Was Number Four, a 12-week serial she had written for The Sketch three years before - long before Ackroyd - and began adapting it into a full-length novel. . . This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by Agatha Christie historian Karl Pike, who has unearthed the 12 magazine stories from the British Library archives and presents here the original version of The Big Four, an adventurous serial novel full of incident and cliffhangers, unseen since 1924.

Dark Days and Much Darker Days A Detective Story Club Christmas Annual

Dark Days and Much Darker Days A Detective Story Club Christmas Annual

Author: Hugh Conway Format: Hardback Release Date: 06/10/2016

A `shilling shocker' from the late 19th century, a macabre novel of murder and its consequences, originally published as a Christmas Annual for adults and now reissued complete with a hilarious parody by satirist Andrew Lang released the same Christmas. In the eyes of the law, murder is murder. When Dr North discovers that his beloved Philippa - surely the most beautiful murderess who ever crossed the pages of fiction - has killed her abusive husband, he must decide whether to turn her in or take the law into his own hands. There are dark days ahead as he wrestles with his conscience: can a crime ever be justified? And is Philippa the villain or the victim? Combining the thrills of the Penny Dreadful with the melodrama of the Sensation Novel, Hugh Conway wrote some of the most successful Christmas crime stories ever published. Dark Days followed his enthralling Called Back as a Christmas Annual, published just before his untimely death ended a writing career of only four years, robbing the world of one of the most popular detective writers since Wilkie Collins. This Detective Story Club Classic is introduced by David Brawn, and includes Much Darker Days by Scottish writer, critic and satirist Andrew Lang, a hilarious retelling of the story which sold almost as well as the original.

The Cask

The Cask

Author: Freeman Wills Crofts Format: Hardback Release Date: 08/09/2016

From the Collins Crime Club archive, the seminal first novel by Freeman Wills Crofts, once dubbed `The King of Detective Story Writers' and recognised as one of the `big four' Golden Age crime authors. The unloading of a consignment of French wine from the steamship Bullfinch is interrupted by a gruesome discovery in a broken cask leaking sawdust and gold sovereigns. But when the shipping clerk returns with the police, the cask and its macabre contents have gone. Following the clues to Paris, Inspector Burnley of Scotland Yard enlists the help of the genial French detective M. Lefarge to check motives and alibis in their hunt for evidence of a particularly fiendish murder. This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by Freeman Wills Crofts himself in a unique preface from 1946 about The Cask's origins.

The Leavenworth Case

The Leavenworth Case

Author: Anna Katharine Green, John Curran Format: Hardback Release Date: 25/07/2016

THIS DETECTIVE STORY CLUB CLASSIC is introduced by Dr John Curran, who looks at how Anna Katherine Green was a pioneer who inspired a new generation of crime writers, in particular a young woman named Agatha Christie. When the retired merchant Horatio Leavenworth is found shot dead in his mansion library, suspicion falls on his nieces, Mary and Eleanore, who stand to inherit his vast fortune. Their lawyer, Everett Raymond, infatuated with one of the sisters, is determined that the official investigator, detective Ebenezer Gryce, widens the inquiry to less obvious suspects. The Leavenworth Case, the first detective novel written by a woman, immortalised its author Anna Katharine Green as `The Mother of Detective Fiction'. Admired for her careful plotting and legal accuracy, the book enjoyed enormous success both in England and America, and was widely translated. It was republished by The Detective Story Club after Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin, speaking at the 1928 Thanksgiving Day dinner of the American Society in London, remarked: `An American woman, a successor of Poe, Anna K. Green, gave us The Leavenworth Case, which I still think one of the best detective stories ever written.'

The Noose

The Noose

Author: Philip MacDonald Format: Hardback Release Date: 20/06/2016

Gentleman detective Anthony Gethryn is in a race against time to save an innocent man from the hangman's noose. Colonel Anthony Gethryn is recalled from a holiday in Spain to solve a murder in the November fogs of London. He finds that his wife is sheltering Mrs Bronson, whose husband is in prison awaiting execution for the murder of a gamekeeper six months before. A petition for reprieve has been rejected and Bronson will shortly hang for someone else's crime. Convinced by Mrs Bronson of her husband's innocence, Gethryn embarks on a seemingly hopeless race against time to overthrow the guilty verdict and find the real murderer - and he has only five days before Bronson's date with the hangman's noose. The Noose saw the return of Philip MacDonald's gentleman detective Anthony Ruthven Gethryn, whose debut in The Rasp six years earlier had been a big success. Judged to be his best book yet, The Noose had the distinction of being chosen as the first book to be published in Collins' Crime Club in May 1930, helping to immortalise it as one of the seminal books of the crime genre. This Detective Story Club classic includes an introduction by H. R. F. Keating, which first appeared in the Crime Club's 1985 `Disappearing Detectives' series.

The Crime Club

The Crime Club

Author: Frank Froest Format: Hardback Release Date: 16/06/2016

The Detective Story Club's first short story anthology is based around a London detective club and includes three newly discovered tales unpublished for 100 years, plus a story bearing an uncanny resemblance to a Conan Doyle Sherlock Holmes story but written some seven years earlier. `You will seek in vain in any book of reference for the name of The Crime Club. Its watchword is secrecy. Its members wear the mask of mystery, but they form the most powerful organisation against master criminals ever known. The Crime Club is an international club composed of men, but they spend their lives studying crime and criminals. In its headquarters are to be found men from Scotland Yard and many foreign detectives and secret service agents. This book tells of their greatest victories over crime and is written, in association with George Dilnot, by a former member of the criminal investigation department of Scotland Yard.' With its highly evocative title, The Crime Club was the first collection of short stories published by the Detective Story Club. Co-authored by CID Superintendent Frank Froest and police historian George Dilnot, these entertaining mysteries left readers guessing how many were based on true cases. This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by David Brawn, who looks at how the The Crime Club inspired a turning point in British book publishing, and includes three newly discovered stories by Froest and Dilnot.

The Blackmailers Dossier No. 113

The Blackmailers Dossier No. 113

Author: Emile Gaboreau, Richard Dalby Format: Hardback Release Date: 21/04/2016

Monsieur Lecoq of the French Surete is called to investigate a Bank Robbery in one of the world's first detective novels, widely credited as the inspiration for Sherlock Holmes. A sensational bank robbery of 350,000 francs is the talk of Paris, with suspicion falling immediately upon Prosper Bertomy, the young cashier whose extravagant living has been the subject of gossip among his friends. As a network of deceit, blackmail, murder and villainy closes around Prosper and his lover Madeleine, Monsieur Lecoq of the French Surete embarks on a daring investigation to prove the young man's innocence in the face of damning evidence and discover the truth behind an otherwise impossible crime. Emile Gaboriau is widely regarded as France's greatest detective writer and a true pioneer of the genre. He created the archetypal detective Monsieur Lecoq, who appeared as a supporting character in L'Affaire Lerouge in 1866 and took centre-stage the following year in Le Dossier No.113, published in English as The Blackmailers. A master of disguise and guile, the stylish Lecoq appeared in only five novels before Gaboriau's death in 1873 aged 40, having created the template for his natural successor - Sherlock Holmes. This detective Story Club classic is introduced by detective fiction expert and researcher Richard Dalby, who examines the work of the Frenchman frequently credited as the creator of the modern detective story.

The Mystery at Stowe

The Mystery at Stowe

Author: Vernon Loder, Nigel Moss Format: Hardback Release Date: 21/03/2016

First published by Collins in 1928, this was the first of 22 mystery novels by Vernon Loder, one of the most popular British mystery-thriller writers of his generation. When a guest at Stowe House is found dead, killed by a lethal dart, suspicion naturally falls on the resident collector of poisoned weapons from tribes in South America. With the entire house party as potential suspects, what part did the woman explorer play in this sinister tragedy? The local police are baffled, and call on the help of an amateur, whose recent assignment working with bushmen in Africa brings new insight into an increasingly unconventional investigation . . . This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by mystery genre collector and expert Nigel Moss, who looks at how one of the most dependable Golden Age authors has been forgotten.

The Terror

The Terror

Author: Edgar Wallace, Martin Edwards Format: Hardback Release Date: 25/02/2016

The sensational novel which launched Collins' Detective Story Club in 1929 was by Edgar Wallace, who wrote more crime stories in the 1920s, and more films, than any other author. This new edition of The Terror, with its original jacket artwork, also includes another classic Wallace text, White Face. A dangerous gang of criminals is imprisoned after a daring robbery, although the ringleader who masterminded the crime disappears with the loot. Finally released after ten years behind bars, they are out for vengeance on the man who betrayed them, and the trail leads to a lonely house haunted by organ music and the spectre of a hooded figure who prowls its dark corridors. The Terror began life as a stage play, then a film, and finally the book that began Collins' Detective Story Club in July 1929. This new edition also includes White Face, the other crime novel Wallace adapted from one of his own plays. A doctor finds a man murdered in a seedy part of London. The police suspect a notorious master of disguise known as `White Face', and the doctor enlists a reporter to help him track down and unmask the elusive killer. This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by award-winning crime novelist and mystery genre expert Martin Edwards, author of the acclaimed The Golden Age of Murder.

The House Opposite

The House Opposite

Author: J. Jefferson Farjeon Format: Hardback Release Date: 14/12/2015

From the Collins Crime Club archive, the first original novel to feature Ben the Cockney tramp, the unorthodox detective character created by J. Jefferson Farjeon, author of Mystery in White. Strange things are happening in the untenanted houses of Jowle Street. There are unaccountable creakings and weird knockings on the door of No.29, where a homeless ex-sailor has taken up residence. But even stranger things are happening in the House Opposite, from where a beautiful woman in an evening gown brings Ben a mysterious message; and worse-the offer of a job! Ben the `passing tramp' was immortalised on film by Alfred Hitchcock in `Number 17', based on a popular 'twenties stage play and novelisation by journalist-turned-author Joe Jefferson Farjeon. The House Opposite (1931) was the first full-length original novel to feature Ben, a reluctant down-at-heels Cockney sleuth, who went on to feature in six more successful detective thrillers from 1931 to 1952. This Detective Story Club classic includes an introduction by H. R. F. Keating, author of the award-winning Inspector Ghote mysteries, which first appeared in the Crime Club's 1985 `Disappearing Detectives' series.

The Rasp

The Rasp

Author: Philip MacDonald, Tony Medawar Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/11/2015

A victim is bludgeoned to death with a woodworker's rasp in this first case for the famed gentleman detective Anthony Gethryn - the latest in a new series of classic detective novels from the vaults of HarperCollins. Ex-Secret Service agent Anthony Gethryn is killing time working for a newspaper when he is sent to cover the murder of Cabinet minister John Hoode, bludgeoned to death in his country home with a wood-rasp. Gethryn is convinced that the prime suspect, Hoode's secretary Alan Deacon, is innocent, but to prove it he must convince the police that not everyone else has a cast-iron alibi for the time of the murder. This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by crime fiction expert and writer Tony Medawar, who investigates the forgotten career of one of the Golden Age's finest detective story writers.

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde

Author: R. L. Stevenson, Richard Dalby Format: Hardback Release Date: 19/11/2015

The latest in a new series of classic detective stories from the vaults of HarperCollins is a reissue of one of literature's most audacious and thought-provoking novels of murder and intrigue, in hardback with its 1929 cover design and a brand new introduction. London lawyer Gabriel John Utterson is persuaded to investigate the sinister activities of the dastardly Mr Edward Hyde. He becomes convinced that Hyde is blackmailing his old friend, Dr Henry Jekyll, and that a master criminal is at work. To his horror, Utterson discovers that the doctor's own researches into the duality of human nature have unleashed a murderous sociopath and set in motion a deadly chain of events that threatens to overwhelm him. Published in January 1886, Robert Louis Stevenson's crime fantasy was an immediate success, inspiring more than 100 stage and film adaptations and becoming one of the best-known stories ever written. It was reissued in the Detective Story Club in 1929 for being `without equal in the realm of detective fiction'. This Detective Story Club classic is introduced by supernatural and detective fiction researcher Richard Dalby. It includes Stevenson's macabre tales `Markheim' and `The Body Snatcher', plus two of the earliest published Jekyll and Hyde parodies - the detective story `Dr Jekyl' by Robert McLaughlin (1931) and a bizarre `Untold Sequel' by Francis Little (1890). The Detective Story Club , launched by Collins in 1929, was a clearing house for the best and most ingenious crime stories of the age, chosen by a select committee of experts. Now, almost 90 years later, these books are the classics of the Golden Age, republished at last with the same popular cover designs that appealed to their original readers.

Called Back

Called Back

Author: Hugh Conway Format: Hardback Release Date: 13/08/2015

The first in a new series of classic detective stories from the vaults of HarperCollins involves a blind man who stumbles across a murder. As he has not seen anything, the assassins let him go, but he finds it is impossible to walk away from murder. The Detective Story Club , launched by Collins in 1929, was a clearing house for the best and most ingenious crime stories of the age, chosen by a select committee of experts. Now, almost 90 years later, these books are the classics of the Golden Age, republished at last with the same popular cover designs that appealed to their original readers. By the purest of accidents the man who is blind accidentally comes on the scene of a murder. He cannot see what is happening but he can hear. He is seen by the assassins who, on discovering him to be blind, allow him to go without harming him. Soon afterwards he recovers his sight and later falls in love with a mysterious woman who is in some way involved in the crime.... The mystery deepens and only after a series of memorable thrills is the tangled skein unravelled. Called Back by Hugh Conway, a pseudonym for Frederick John Fargus, was first published in 1883. It was a huge success, selling 350,000 copies in its first year, leading to a highly acclaimed stage play the following year. This new edition is introduced by novelist and crime writing expert, Martin Edwards, author of The Golden Age of Murder.

The Mayfair Mystery 2835 Mayfair

The Mayfair Mystery 2835 Mayfair

Author: Frank Richardson Format: Hardback Release Date: 13/08/2015

The first in a new series of classic detective stories from the vaults of HarperCollins involves a disappearing corpse, a supernatural theory, and a genuinely shocking finale. The Detective Story Club , launched by Collins in 1929, was a clearing house for the best and most ingenious crime stories of the age, chosen by a select committee of experts. Now, almost 90 years later, these books are the classics of the Golden Age, republished at last with the same popular cover designs that appealed to their original readers. This most entertaining detective story is concerned with an amazing crime. The body of a wealthy man is discovered by his valet. The valet hurried to a friend of the dead man to tell him of the tragedy. They return to find the body gone! The motive of the murder becomes a deeper mystery still, and no clue seems to lead anywhere. Little by little, however, evidence is built up round a theory, and clever detective work triumphs in the end. For ingenuity and dramatic situations The Mayfair Mystery is hard to beat. First published in 1907 as 2835 Mayfair, the book had caught the imagination of the reading public for its thrilling twists, its wit and imagination, and was chosen to be one of the first 12 classic books released by the Club. This new edition comes with a brand new introduction about the history of the Detective Club by HarperCollins' editor, David Brawn.