Seven famous and sensational true crime stories retold by classic crime writers:Dr. Crippen, Lover and Poisoner by William Le QueuxThe Secret of the Moat Farm by Edgar WallaceThe Green Bicycle Mystery by Edgar JepsonLandru, the Bluebeard of France by William Le QueuxThe Murder on Yarmouth Sands by Edgar WallaceHerbert Armstrong, Poisoner by Edgar WallaceThe Battersea Flat Mystery by Edgar Jepson
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.
Richard Horatio Edgar Wallace was born on the 1st April 1875 in Greenwich, London. Leaving school at 12 because of truancy, by the age of fifteen he had experience; selling newspapers, as a worker in a rubber factory, as a shoe shop assistant, as a milk delivery boy and as a ship’s cook.
By 1894 he was engaged but broke it off to join the Infantry being posted to South Africa. He also changed his name to Edgar Wallace which he took from Lew Wallace, the author of Ben-Hur.
In Cape Town in 1898 he met Rudyard Kipling and was inspired to begin writing. His first collection of ballads, The Mission that Failed! was enough of a success that in 1899 he paid his way out of the armed forces in order to turn to writing full time.By 1904 he had completed his first thriller, The Four Just Men. Since nobody would publish it he resorted to setting up his own publishing company which he called Tallis Press.
In 1911 his Congolese stories were published in a collection called Sanders of the River, which became a bestseller. He also started his own racing papers, Bibury’s and R. E. Walton’s Weekly, eventually buying his own racehorses and losing thousands gambling. A life of exceptionally high income was also mirrored with exceptionally large spending and debts.
Wallace now began to take his career as a fiction writer more seriously, signing with Hodder and Stoughton in 1921. He was marketed as the ‘King of Thrillers’ and they gave him the trademark image of a trilby, a cigarette holder and a yellow Rolls Royce. He was truly prolific, capable not only of producing a 70,000 word novel in three days but of doing three novels in a row in such a manner. It was estimated that by 1928 one in four books being read was written by Wallace, for alongside his famous thrillers he wrote variously in other genres, including science fiction, non-fiction accounts of WWI which amounted to ten volumes and screen plays. Eventually he would reach the remarkable total of 170 novels, 18 stage plays and 957 short stories.
Wallace became chairman of the Press Club which to this day holds an annual Edgar Wallace Award, rewarding ‘excellence in writing’.
Diagnosed with diabetes his health deteriorated and he soon entered a coma and died of his condition and double pneumonia on the 7th of February 1932 in North Maple Drive, Beverly Hills. He was buried near his home in England at Chalklands, Bourne End, in Buckinghamshire.
This volume comes to you from Miniature Masterpieces, a specialized imprint from Deadtree Publishing. Our range is large and growing and covers single authors, themes, and many compilations.
Herbert Armstrong was a Welsh solicitor who murdered his wife by administering arsenic. His life was marked by love affairs and dubious business dealings. It is also probable that his hatred of his dull, respectable existence in a tiny rural village was one of the motives for his terrible crime.
This story of the crime and trial of Armstrong is told by Edgar Wallace, who reported from the courtroom. On behalf of a newspaper syndicate, Wallace offered the convicted man £5,000 for his confession. The offer was refused.
Yet the short story is perhaps their equal in other ways. Within these succinct little time capsules of words are captured ideas, attitudes, feelings and life that are expressed in a few pages just as movingly, imaginatively and tellingly as in any other form.
Some of these stories will be familiar but some may not. From Virginia Woolf to Katharine Mansfield and John Buchan to C. E. Montague various writing styles try to make sense of this world at war.
Some may do so directly and some obliquely. Some speak of class others of the masses but all reveal their author’s intent and their mastery of war and its effects and consequences upon the human condition as told through their words.
Richard Horatio Edgar Wallace (1875-1932) was an English writer of 957 short stories and over 170 novels. He is widely recognized as one of the most prolific writers of his age.
'The Green Mamba' is a story in which Wallace's famous detective, Mr. J. G. Reeder, outsmarts one of the leading master criminals in London at the very moment when he is on the verge of his greatest criminal coup.
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