May Forbes, forty plus and single, came four nights a week to feed the wild cats on Broomstick Common. That was how she happened to glimpse a masked man with a spade. Fearful for her own life, she lands up at the Mettlesome Horse, where that remarkable lawyer, Arthur Crook, is drinking at the bar. So when the body of pretty eighteen-year-old Linda Myers is found buried on the Common, Crook discovers a number of people who might want the girl dead.Then May Forbes leaves for work one lunchtime and does not reappear ...'Ingenious plot leavened with sly humour' Evening News 'The plot is knife-edge tension all the way' Belfast Telegraph
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Anthony Gilbert was the pen name of Lucy Beatrice Malleson. Born in London, she spent all her life there, and her affection for the city is clear from the strong sense of character and place in evidence in her work. She published 69 crime novels, 51 of which featured her best known character, Arthur Crook, a vulgar London lawyer totally (and deliberately) unlike the aristocratic detectives, such as Lord Peter Wimsey, who dominated the mystery field at the time. She also wrote more than 25 radio plays, which were broadcast in Great Britain and overseas. Her thriller The Woman in Red (1941) was broadcast in the United States by CBS and made into a film in 1945 under the title My Name is Julia Ross. She was an early member of the British Detection Club, which, along with Dorothy L. Sayers, she prevented from disintegrating during World War II. Malleson published her autobiography, Three-a-Penny, in 1940, and wrote numerous short stories, which were published in several anthologies and in such periodicals as Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine and The Saint. The short story 'You Can't Hang Twice' received a Queens award in 1946. She never married, and evidence of her feminism is elegantly expressed in much of her work.
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