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Somebody at the Door (British Library Crime Classics)

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9781464209123: Somebody at the Door (British Library Crime Classics)
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WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY MARTIN EDWARDS

'The death was an odd one, it was true; but there was after all no very clear reason to assume it was anything but natural.'

In the winter of 1942, England lies cold and dark in the wartime blackout. One bleak evening, Councillor Grayling steps off the 6.12 from Euston, carrying 120 in cash, and oblivious to the fate that awaits him in the snow-covered suburbs.

Inspector Holly draws up a list of Grayling's fellow passengers: his distrusted employee Charles Evetts, the charming Hugh Rolandson, and an unknown refugee from Nazi Germany, among others. Inspector Holly will soon discover that each passenger harbours their own dark secrets, and that the councillor had more than one enemy among them.

First published in 1943, Raymond Postgate's wartime murder mystery combines thrilling detection with rich characters and a fascinating depiction of life on the home front.

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About the Author:

RAYMOND POSTGATE (1896-1971) was a socialist journalist and historian, and founder of the Good Food Guide. He also wrote highly regarded detective novels of which Verdict of Twelve is the most famous.

Review:
"Postgate adapts the most striking structural device of his much better known Verdict of Twelve (1940/2017) by devoting most of his narrative to detailed back stories of most of Grayling's fellow passengers before returning to a present in which Holly tries out one possible solution after another before hitting on one as logical as it is surprising ... clever, absorbing, and wide-ranging: another welcome rediscovery by the British Library Crime Classics." (Kirkus Reviews)

"This British Library Crime Classics reissue will remind readers of Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express (1934). Postgate veers from a traditional detective story into the points of view of the people in the compartment in a way that keeps suspense fresh. Steeped in atmosphere, with skillful plotting and intriguing characterization." (Connie Fletcher Booklist)

"Somebody at the Door is worthy of a place on your To Be Read list." (Leslie Blatt Classic Mysteries)

"In this 1943 mystery, Postgate (1896–1971) reveals the backstories of his well-drawn characters with the same thoroughness as in his classic Verdict of Twelve (1940), and his opinion of his fellow humans is not overly kind. The portrait of Britain at war and a trip through Germany right before the start of WWII have an immediacy that's fascinating for today's reader with an interest in the history of the time." (Publishers Weekly)

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