The third of October. What is that date famous for?
Well, in 1392, Muhammed VII became the twelfth sultan of the Emirate of Granada. In 1712, the Duke of Montrose issued a warrant for the arrest of Rob Roy. In 1863, Abraham Lincoln decided that Thanksgiving would be the last Thursday in November. In 1935, Italy invaded Ethiopia. In 1949, WERD, the first black-owned radio station in the USA opened in Atlanta. In 1995, O J Simpson was aquitted. And in 2022… well, in 2022…
Anthony Bathurst is back!
The Case Of Elymas The Sorceror
Less than an hour later, the nude body of the dead man lay in the outhouse which did duty at St. Mead as the official mortuary.
Anthony Bathurst is taking the sea-air at the village of St Mead, when the local constabulary drag him into the investigation of a local murder.
The mystery is grotesque: someone has stripped the body, left it in a field and shaved the victim’s moustache off. Soon a second body is found, along with a mentally-challenged young man whispering about “gold” . . .
With these obstacles in his path, can Bathurst possibly unmask the killer?
“A dead man in my car? But how can that be? Do you mean somebody-er-that was taken ill or something?”
“No, sir. The dead man in your car was murdered.”
When Richard Langley entered the town of Angel, he encountered the unexpected. He never expected to meet Priscilla Schofield. He never expected to be asked to deliver her kitten Ahaseurus to Priscilla’s father. And he never expected to stumble into the wrong house and come face to face with a gang of criminals.
Soon, Langley finds himself looking over his shoulder for enemies in the shadows and then a body turns up in his car . . . But it is only when Langley himself disappears that Priscilla decides she needs to summon some help – help in the form of Anthony Lotherington Bathurst.
“There’s little doubt, as I see it, that Flagon was killed by a dart thrown with amazing skill and dexterity.”
The Bar Point-to-Point meeting at Quiddington St Philip is always an auspicious occasion. This year, Justice Nicholas Flagon is the favourite to win-there’s big money on him, and a fair bit against him as well. But who will scoop the jackpot when the leading jockey fails to finish-on account of getting hit in the neck with a poisoned dart?
Anthony Lotherington Bathurst and Chief Inspector McMorran are more interested in who killed Flagon. Who poisoned a set of darts from the local pub with curare and was capable of hitting a jockey on a speeding horse with a single throw? And who killed a lawyer at Flagon’s funeral with the same murder weapon?
Elisabeth slept! It is perhaps a matter for wonderment that her sleep was untroubled. For-had she but known it-she was so close to Terror and Tragedy! So close to Death and deaths-so close to the menace of `Mr Levi’!
Mr Medlicott, a solicitor, heads to the country home of his old friend and client Sir John Wynward, to spend Christmas with Sir John’s family and friends. But after a peaceful and enjoyable Christmas for all apart from Medlicott himself, Sir John dies on Boxing Night, sitting at his desk in his study-to all appearances, a heart attack.
But natural death is out of the question when both Medlicott and Gooch, the chauffeur, are found murdered. What was Medlicott so afraid of? What did Gooch know that got him killed? Who is the mysterious “Mr Levi”, who sent notes to the victims demanding “the diamond”?
The nude body swung right-left as its weight played on the rope which the hook held.
Dr. Julian Field had a straightforward day ahead of him-a short train journey to visit his patient, the wife of Philip Stanhope of Stoke Pelly, and then a journey home. So what caused him to leave the station at an earlier station, Fullaford? Whatever it was apparently led him to St. Mark’s Church. And whatever it was led to him being found hanging from the light fixture in the church porch . . .
Why were half of his clothes found in the font of the church, and the other half in the font of a different church? Why was his wife summoned in the dead of night to nearby Friar’s Woodburn on a fool’s errand? And why has a sample of Mrs Stanhope’s sputum disappeared? As Anthony Bathurst and Andrew MacMorran investigate, they discover many secrets hiding behind the façade of village life-but which of them was strong enough to lead to murder?
Yes, you’ll have to make do with five cases from Anthony this year – we don’t want your fun to end too soon, do we? This five contains some absolutely cracking cases for Bathurst and the book that maybe helped sink Brian into obscurity when Barzun and Taylor dismissed it as “straight tripe and savorless”. Were they right? Conspiracy At Angel is an odd book, certainly, but it’s far from tripe. Now you get the chance to decide. But if you want something more traditional, The Sharp Quillet, Exit Sir John and The Swinging Death are all classic mysteries, with The Case Of Elymas The Sorceror being sort of half-mystery, half-thriller. I re-read that one recently to write the introduction to these books (more than worth the price alone) and it’s a really fun book.
So, less than a month to go. But you can pre-order them now…
And The Sharp Quillet has perhaps overtaken a few others as my favorite Flynn! So a thumbs up from one who read a tattered old copy I was able to dredge up.
It is odd that there seem to be more copies of this out there than any other book by Brian. Maybe it’s because everyone enjoyed it so much and kept it?
I am thrilled that I’ll finally be able to buy myself a copy of ‘The Sharp Quillet’. Thank you! I read The Sharp Quillet as a teenager, when I found my grandfather’s copy in my a bookcase. My grandfather and Brian Flynn were friends for many years.
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Great news! I suppose Conspiracy at Angel is one of his pulp-style thrillers and perhaps not his most successful one? Either way, I look forward to these reprints, especially The Sharp Quillet and Exit Sir John.
Thanks Steve and Dean Street for continuing to re-publish Brian Flynn novels. Whilst I will give Conspiracy at Angel a miss, I ordered the other four today and look forward to reading them.
After these first 35, how many more Bathurst books did Flynn write?