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Crime of the Fictional Variety

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  • Biggles and the Black Peril – Captain W.E. Johns c1960

    Biggles and the Black Peril – Captain W.E. Johns c1960

    Published by Dean & Sons, London no date but circa 1960. Octavo, 184 pages, slightly evenly browned as with Dean of the period. A good copy in a slightly edge worn dust jacket.

    Whilst grounded in the fog of the Essex marshes, Biggles and his mates see a giant foreign flying boat land on an illuminated creek. Adventure ensues involving … well .. the Russians.

    Biggles wins against the odds against the Russians.


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  • The Lake Frome Monster – Arthur Upfield – First edition

    The Lake Frome Monster – Arthur Upfield – First edition

    A first edition of Arthur Upfield’s last novel. Incomplete at his death it was crafted into publication by J L Price and Dorothy Strange.

    Published by Heinemann, London in 1966.

    Octavo, 184 pages, all in pretty good condition. Edges a little aged, the strikingly scary jacket with some creases but as good as they come if you can find one.

    The last Napoleon Bonaparte novel (obviously). Lake Frome is in South Australia, it’s large but rarely fills with water. A roving photographer is found dead … the monster?

    Bony sets about resolving the unusual murder disguised as workman tending the very long dog-proof fence. His life is in danger … but our Bony is no coward!

    Bony … out in the dirt solving the weirdest of murders.


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  • Madman’s Bend – Arthur Upfield – First Edition 1963

    Madman’s Bend – Arthur Upfield – First Edition 1963

    A very good copy of the first edition of the last completed novel of Australian writer Arthur Upfield.

    Aurthur William Upfield (1890-1964) was born in England and came to Australia and made it his home in 1911. He served in WWI, carried out a number of inland excursions in Australia and became familiar with the bush and indigenous Australians. He wrote many novels and is famous particularly for his crime series featuring Detective Inspector Napoleon “Bony” Bonaparte of the Queensland Police Force, a mixed race indigenous Australian. This his last book in the series is set along the Darling River in NSW.

    Published by Heinemann, London in 1963. Octavo, 232 pages, a little age along the top edge, but really as good a copy. Very clean internally. Solid jacket

    One of “Bony’s” toughest mysteries. William Lush, sheep station owner and drunk beats his wife and goes to town in search of more grog. Returning he runs out of fuel and walks the remainder of the way home where he finds the door barred by his daughter who fires as shot from the other side. Lush disappears and his wife dies from her injuries … Bony is confronted with a dilemma is he searching for a murderer or a victim .. it all gets quite complicated.

    Collectable and final Arthur Upfield Mystery


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  • To Have and Have Not – Ernest Hemmingway

    To Have and Have Not – Ernest Hemmingway

    A Special Cape edition, with striking wrap-around dust jacket designed by Hans Tindal.

    Crown octavo, published by Jonathan Cape, London in 1955 one year after the first in this form. 246 pages. Jacket edges a little chipped, page edges aged, but a pretty good copy for this desirable edition.

    Hemingway at his most adventurous in the Keys and Cuba. Three long short stories to do with the life of Harry Morgan … tough stuff.

    Tough Hemingway in amazing jacket


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  • Our Man in Havana – Graham Greene – First 1958

    Our Man in Havana – Graham Greene – First 1958

    Graham Greene’s masterpiece and a fine encouragement to all vacuum cleaner salesmen.

    Published by Heinemann. London a first edition 1958. Octavo, 273 pages. Foxing to page edges, jacket very good, the odd minor chip.

    A super spy story and a put down of the big wigs back at the Circus. Blatantly (self confessed) copied by Le Carre in his Tailor of Panama. We prefer this and you must see the old film starring Alex Guinness.

    Graham Greene First – Humour and Spying in Havana


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  • Maigret in Society – George Simenon

    Maigret in Society – George Simenon

    Published by the Thriller Book Club, Charing Cross, London in collaboration with and in the same year as the Hamish Hamilton first.

    Octavo, 160 pages, very good condition.

    The 78-year-old Comte Armand de Saint-Hilaire is found dead. A former Ambassador to Rome. Washington and London. All his acquaintances are elderly and Maigret is given little to work on other than the discovery of letter which suggest a long-standing love for Princess de V_____. Strange goings on are exposed.

    Maigret not out of his depth in High Society.


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