The pocket-sized FLAME TREE COLLECTABLE CRIME CLASSICS are chosen to create a delightful and timeless gift library of classic crime and mystery thrillers. Each stunning unabridged edition features deluxe cover treatments, ribbon markers, luxury endpapers and gilded edges.
The first best-selling title in S.S. Van Dine’s series of Philo Vance detective mysteries, The Benson Murder Case (1926), was inspired by the real-life unsolved murder of Joseph Bowne Elwell (1873–1920) in which the victim was shot from within his locked house. Intellectual dandy and amateur sleuth Vance – ‘a man of unusual culture and brilliance’ – finds the case of murdered playboy stockbroker Alvin Benson fascinating, the missing toupee and false teeth being especially curious… Vance kindly comes to the aid of his friend District Attorney Markham and sets about tracking down the killer using his cerebral powers of deduction in contrast to the short-sighted methods of the police.
A specially commissioned biography of the author and a glossary of Victorian and Literary terms make this new edition essential for all classic crime fans!
About the Author
S.S. Van Dine was the crime-novel pseudonym of Willard Huntington Wright (1888–1939), an American journalist, critic and novelist. It was as a writer of detective fiction that he found financial success. His series of novels featuring snobbish amateur sleuth and art lover Philo Vance, the first of which was The Benson Murder Case (1926), were so popular that they also lead to movies and radio, and prevented Wright from ever returning to the less lucrative writing of which he would have been more proud.
Judith John is a writer and editor specializing in literature and history. A former secondary school English Language and Literature teacher, she has subsequently worked as an editor on major educational projects, including English A: Literature for the Pearson International Baccalaureate series. Judith’s major research interests include Romantic and Gothic literature, and Renaissance drama.
The Curator of the Edgar Allan Poe Museum in Richmond, Christopher Semtner has written a number of books and articles about Poe, visual art, and history. He has appeared on BBC4, PBS, Military History Channel, and many other stations to speak about the author. Semtner is also an internationally exhibited visual artist whose paintings have entered several public and private collections.