“If I had to vote for the single best detective story, this would be it.” —A.S. Byatt
Celebrated amateur detective Albert Campion awakes in hospital, accused of attacking a police officer and suffering from acute amnesia. All he can remember is that he was on a mission of vital importance to His Majesty’s government before his accident. On the run from the police and unable to recognize even his faithful servant or his beloved fiancée, Campion struggles desperately to put the pieces together—while World War II rages and the very fate of England is at stake.
Published in 1941, Traitor’s Purse is “a wartime masterpiece” (The Guardian).
“Uncommonly exciting stuff, replete with Allingham’s skill in story-building and the plausible characters that make her as much a fine novelist as a mystery writer.” —The New Republic
“Margery Allingham stands out like a shining light. And she has another quality, not usually associated with crime stories, elegance.” —Agatha Christie
About the author
Margery Allingham was born in Ealing, London in 1904 to a family immersed in literature. Her first novel, Blackkerchief Dick, was published in 1923 when she was 19. Her first work of detective fiction was a serialized story published by the Daily Express in 1927. Entitled The White Cottage Mystery, it contained atypical themes for a woman writer of the era. Her breakthrough occurred in 1929 with the publication of The Crime at Black Dudley. This introduced Albert Campion, albeit originally as a minor character. He returned in Mystery Mile, thanks in part to pressure from her American publishers, much taken with the character. Campion proved so successful that Allingham made him the centerpiece of another 17 novels and over 20 short stories, continuing into the 1960s.
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