Tuesday, January 21, 2014

One You Probably Won't Mind Missing

THE ST. CADIX CASE.
By Esther Miller.
A. D. Innes & Co.
1898. 376 pages. 6s.
No e-book available.
Two thumbs down from contemporary reviewers:
There was the making of a fine detective story in the first few chapters here. But the authoress gave a clue to the least shrewd of readers, and the detective interest died forthwith. From that point she turned her tale into a love-story, of a very ordinary kind.
As we know the heroine is not guilty of the murder, so do we know she will at last face her trial, be acquitted, and that the benevolent doctor will do the handsome thing by her.
There is not a surprise in the book, and there are no compensations in the way of good writing, or cleverly conceived character. It is a story such as one has the chance of reading by the hundred any year—sentimental, amiable, and entirely commonplace. — "Novel Notes," THE BOOKMAN [U.K.] (August 1898)
A Cornish story in which love runs to marriage through the rough experience of a murder trial. The heroine, thrown suddenly by the death of her father among rough-mannered relatives, is wooed and married almost forcibly by her cousin, Jim Hendra, who is murdered on the day he marries her.
By the way, we are not aware that a judge, when passing sentence on a murderer, says, "Till you be dead—dead—dead." He is usually satisfied that the criminal be dead once. — THE ACADEMY AND LITERATURE (May 14, 1898)
Category: Detective fiction

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