Monday, August 24, 2015

"Ah, Gentlemen, That Is Art! Criminal, Perhaps. Cowardly. But Art! And I Have Known Artists . . ."

"Murder à la Carte."
By Jean-Toussaint Samat (1891-1944).
Found in The Living Age, June 1, 1931.
Short short story (5 pages).
Online HERE.
The next time you sit down to table with strangers (or even with loved ones, for that matter), you might think about this one:
. . . 'All in all, [poisoning is] not a very clever method. But there is a possibility that the crime will not be discovered? Of course. Out of every ten cases of poisoning, four are due to carelessness. To drinking or eating poison by error. These four cases are banal, uninteresting. Five cases have criminal intent at their origin. Of these five, three are never suspected of being crimes, two are prosecuted as such. Only one of these two results in a conviction. A conviction, I said—not punishment. Four cases plus three cases plus two cases; that makes nine. Nine deaths due to poison. Banal, all nine of them. But the tenth? Ah, there is something worthy of real admiration! Yes, I mean admiration. For the tenth case is one of poisoning by a nonpoisonous substance!'  . . .
- There's an article from the French Wikipedia about thriller writer Samat HERE (English translation).
- One of Samat's thrillers is for sale HERE.
- HERE is a Wikipedia list of fictional poisons, as if the actual ones weren't bad enough . . . speaking of which, you can go HERE for a National Geographic article about the real thing.

Category: Culinary crime fiction

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