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The Book of the Crime (Henry Gamadge #16)

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Title:The Book of the Crime (Henry Gamadge #16)
Daly, Elizabeth   
(4 of 14 for author by title)
The Book of the Lion (Henry Gamadge #13)
Arrow Pointing Nowhere [AKA Murder Listens In] (Henry Gamadge #7)
Published:   1951
Publisher:Farrar & Rinehart
Tags:fiction, mystery

This last mystery in the Henry Gamadge series set in 1940s New York was originally published in 1951. Henry must help Rena Austen, newly wed, who has decided her marriage was a big mistake, and has fled her husband's gloomy Upper East Side house in fear for her life.

When a bride runs away from her husband, it could be just a lovers' quarrel. But when she runs straight to Henry Gamadge, you can be sure there's a crime involved. In fact, pretty Rena Austen was sure she had married a homicidal maniac. A wounded war hero, Gray Austen seemed the perfect lover when they first met. But his gloomy house, sour-faced servants, and sinister brother and sister soon turned Rena's dream married into a nightmare. Then came the day she took an old book from the sitting room shelf. Suddenly, inexplicably, this innocent act sent her husband into a murderous rage - and within hours the mysterious book and an unidentified corpse made Rena's marriage the basis for Gamadge's most tantalizing case. [Suggest a different description.]

Pages:81 Info

Author Bio for Daly, Elizabeth

Elizabeth Daly (1878-1967) was born in New York City and educated at Bryn Mawr College, Pennsylvania and Columbia University. She was a reader in English at Bryn Mawr and tutored in English and French. She was awarded an Edgar in 1960. Her series character is Henry Gamadge, an antiquarian book dealer.

Daly works in the footsteps of Jane Austen, offering an extraordinarily clear picture of society in her time through the interactions of a few characters. In that tradition, if you knew a person's family history, general type, and a few personal quirks, you could be said to know everything worth knowing about that person. Today the emphasis is on baring the darkest depths of psycho- and socio-pathology; contemporary readers raised on this style may find Ms. Daly both elitist and somewhat facile. But fans of classic movies and whodunits know that a focus on polished surfaces brings with it the possibility of hidden secrets and things unsaid; for those who disdain the obvious confessional style of today, the Gamadge books have much to recommend them.

Elizabeth Daly now seems sadly forgotten by many which is a shame as all her books are superbly crafted and plotted, indeed she counted none other than Agatha Christie as one of her fans. She published sixteen books all of which featured her main series character Henry Gamadge. He is a bibliophile and expert on rare books and manuscripts which makes her books particularly appealing to fans of the bibliomystery. There was some disparity between UK and US releases some being published out of sequence, the bibliography shown follows the US editions which are the true firsts. Murder Listens In and Shroud for a Lady are re-titled reissues of earlier books.


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