'A master magician . . . King of the Art of Misdirection' Agatha Christie
Jim Blake, journalist and successful spy novelist, is sent to New Orleans to do a story on James Claiborne Blake, a congressional hopeful in the 1912 election. But even from New York he senses following eyes. James Blake, it seems, is threatened by sexual indiscretions.
And as the plot thickens, both Blakes become involved in politics and intrigue - and then impossible murder - among the atmospheric byways of New Orleans.
'A wonderful period piece that includes some fascinating real-life characters' Saturday Review
John Dickson Carr (1906-1977), the master of the locked-room mystery, was born in Uniontown, Pennsylvania, the son of a US Congressman. He studied law in Paris before settling in England where he married an Englishwoman, and he spent most of his writing career living in Great Britain. Widely regarded as one of the greatest Golden Age mystery writers, his work featured apparently impossible crimes often with seemingly supernatural elements. He modelled his affable and eccentric series detective Gideon Fell on G. K. Chesterton, and wrote a number of novels and short stories, including his series featuring Henry Merrivale, under the pseudonym Carter Dickson. He was one of only two Americans admitted to the British Detection club, and was highly praised by other mystery writers. Dorothy L. Sayers said of him that 'he can create atmosphere with an adjective, alarm with allusion, or delight with a rollicking absurdity'. In 1950 he was awarded the first of two prestigious Edgar Awards by the Mystery Writers of America, and was presented with their Grand Master Award in 1963. He died in Greenville, South Carolina in 1977.