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  • The Murder Room

The Delicate Ape

Dorothy B. Hughes

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Fiction, Crime & mystery

'An author with a flair for terror' The New Yorker

Diplomatic corps man Piers Hunt watches the glittering lights of Broadway from his Hotel Astor room. The German girl's mocking voice returns to his mind yet again: 'More melodrama, Piers?' Yes: this time it's 'more melodrama', but with a vengeance.

In New York incognito, only Piers knows that his superior, Samuel Anstruther, has been murdered, possibly to get him out of the way of a plan to withdraw a police force that governs post-Second World War Germany. Rumours abound that the Germans might be allowed free reign once again.

Piers is a man of peace, but he may have to get his hands dirty if he doesn't want to be murdered - before telling the world what Anstruther knew . . .

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Dorothy B. Hughes

Dorothy B. Hughes was an acclaimed crime novelist and literary critic, her style falling into the hard-boiled and noir genres of mystery writing. Born in Kansas City, she studied journalism at the University of Missouri, and her initial literary output consisted of collections of poetry. Hughes' first mystery novel, The So Blue Marble, was published in 1940 and was hailed as the arrival of a great new talent in the field. Her writing proved to be both critically and commercially successful, and three of her novels - The Fallen Sparrow, Ride the Pink Horse and In a Lonely Place - were made into major films. Hughes' taught, suspenseful detective novels are reminiscent of the work of Elisabeth Sanxay Holding and fellow The Murder Room author Margaret Millar. In 1951, Hughes was awarded an Edgar award for Outstanding Mystery Criticism and, in 1978, she received the Grand Master award from the Mystery Writers of America. She died in Oregon in 1993.

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