books

Fantasy Mystery Romance Comics Non-Fiction

Bodies from the Library: Lost Tales of Mystery and Suspense from the Golden Age of Detection

Sunday, January 14, 2024

Bodies from the Library: Lost Tales of Mystery and Suspense from the Golden Age of Detection (2018)

‘Before Insulin’ by J.J. Connington (1936)
‘The Inverness Cape’ by Leo Bruce (1952)
‘Dark Waters’ by Freeman Wills Crofts (1953)
‘Linckes’ Great Case’ by Georgette Heyer (1923)
‘Calling James Braithwaite’ by Nicholas Blake (1940)
‘The Elusive Bullet’ by John Rhode (1936)
‘The Euthanasia of Hilary’s Aunt’ by Cyril Hare (1950)
‘The Girdle of Dreams’ by Vincent Cornier (1933)
‘The Fool and the Perfect Murder’ by Arthur Upfield (1979)
‘Bread Upon the Waters’ by A. A. Milne (1950)
‘The Man with the Twisted Thumb’ by Anthony Berkeley (1933)
‘The Rum Punch’ by Christianna Brand
‘Blind Man’s Bluff’ by Ernest Bramah (1918)
‘Victoria Pumphrey’ by H. C. Bailey (1939)
‘The Starting Handle Murder’ by Roy Vickers (1934)
‘The Wife of the Kenite’ by Agatha Christie (1922)

‘Before Insulin’ by J.J. Connington (1936)

Three years ago, young Robin took diabetes, a bad case, poor fellow. We did what we could for him, naturally. All the specialists had a turn, without improvement. Then we sent him over to Neuenahr, to some institute run by a German who specialised in diabetes. No good. I went over to see the poor boy, and he was worn to a shadow, simply skin and bone and hardly able to walk with weakness. Obviously it was a mere matter of time.’

‘The Inverness Cape’ by Leo Bruce (1952)

This was one of the ones that felt somewhat ridiculous to me.

‘Dark Waters’ by Freeman Wills Crofts (1953)

Ah, criminals who think they are smarter than the police.

‘Linckes’ Great Case’ by Georgette Heyer (1923)

I will tell Winthrop that among other things I am sending him the plan of the new ’plane.

“the new ’plane”

I love seeing how language changed–how long was ‘plane used before it became simply plane?

‘Oh, now the beastly pen won’t write! Damn! I hate quills!’

‘Then why use them?’

‘Heaven knows! I used to like them awfully.

‘Calling James Braithwaite’ by Nicholas Blake (1940)

(General outrcry and tohu-bohu)

‘The Elusive Bullet’ by John Rhode (1936)

There was a party from Woolwich, with a new sort of light machine-gun, something like a Lewis. But they wasn’t shooting, only testing.’

‘What is the difference?’ asked the professor.

‘Well, sir, by testing I mean they had the thing held in a clamp, so that it couldn’t move. The idea is to keep it pointing in exactly the same direction, instead of wobbling about as it might if a man was holding it.

‘The Euthanasia of Hilary’s Aunt’ by Cyril Hare (1950)

Very crafty.

‘The Girdle of Dreams’ by Vincent Cornier (1933)

You would not miss the kau-karo tree, the “itchwood tree” as we call it. And you would learn, trust you to do that, about the essences of the tree: so potent that a tiny drop exuded from one oblong leaf can cause intense irritation and, occasionally, blindness. And you would inform yourself all about the sap’s distillation into a drug of the mydriatic genus—a powerful hypnotic causing the mind to conceive and imagine all kinds of erotic nonsenses.

‘The Fool and the Perfect Murder’ by Arthur Upfield (1979)

‘There’s no telephonic communication between the hut and the homestead. Once every month the people at the homestead trucked rations to Reynolds. And once every week, every Monday morning, a stockman from the homestead would meet Reynolds midway between homestead and hut to give Reynolds his mail, and orders, and have a yarn with him over a billy of tea.’

So. Much. Racism.

‘Bread Upon the Waters’ by A. A. Milne (1950)

Rich, elderly bachelors often become bores, and bores prefer to have somebody at hand who cannot escape.

‘The Man with the Twisted Thumb’ by Anthony Berkeley (1933)

‘Are you weakening?’ demanded Geoffrey.

‘Yes,’ Veronica acknowledged. ‘I don’t like you being shot at.’

‘I don’t mind him being shot at,’ Archie said with equanimity.

This is a silly comedy.

‘The Rum Punch’ by Christianna Brand

He was a great believer in insurance, he taught my mother to be too: and a jolly good thing because she made my step-father take out a big insurance in her favour in case he died before her; and now that’s all we shall have. All the rest’s gone.’

Everything came out of left field on this one.

‘Blind Man’s Bluff’ by Ernest Bramah (1918)

The mantelpiece (touching it) Petworth marble with its characteristic fossil shell markings. The wallpaper (brushing his hand over it) arrangements of pansies on a criss-cross background (touching his tongue with one finger)—colour scheme largely green and gold—

(eye roll)

‘Victoria Pumphrey’ by H. C. Bailey (1939)

Thus, Miss Pumphrey is wont to say, was she launched on her present pro?table career of crime. But she considers that she always had a bent for it.

Career of crime being an investigator, not a criminal.

‘The Starting Handle Murder’ by Roy Vickers (1934)

Motor-cars were coming into general use, though they were still frowned upon in the mess, because it was commonly believed that they would put an end to hunting.

But the key to the social relationships of this period has been trampled in the mud of the Great War

‘The Wife of the Kenite’ by Agatha Christie (1922)

He was a religious man himself, with a thorough belief in the German God, the God of the Old Testament, a God of blood and battles, of thunder and lightning, of material rewards and dire material vengeance, swift to anger and terrible in wrath.

This is an early story but has the hallmarks of her skills.

Publisher: Collins Crime Club

Rating: 6/10

Categories: Anthology, British, eBook, Historical, Mystery

Tags: , , ,

Comments (0)

   

 

No comments

Leave a Comment


XHTML: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

RSS feed Comments