The Complete JG Reeder (5-books-in-1)

Edgar Wallace

"'How on earth did you piece together all this?' he asked in wonder. Mr Reeder shook his head sadly. 'I have that perversion,' he said. 'It is a terrible misfortune. I see evil in everything. I have the mind of a criminal.'"

At first glance J.G. Reeder is an ordinary, slightly shabby little man with red hair, weak eyes, whiskers, square-toed boots and a chest protector cravat. However, working for the Public Prosecutor he finds plenty to stretch his extraordinary mind.

The Mind of Mr. J.G. Reeder (US title: The Murder Book of Mr. J. G. Reeder) (1925), is a collection of short stories. Many a criminal has taken one look at Reeder and thought how easy it was going to be to put one over on the little man...only to find themselves inside a prison cell before they knew quite what had happened. He claims that his secret is simple: "You see, I have a criminal mind."

Terror Keep (1927) is a thrilling mystery novel of a genius detective and genius madman trying to outmanoeuvre each other. With the assistance of his awe-stricken young secretary, J.G. Reeder takes on old enemy John Slack, who has vowed to kill him.

Red Aces (1929), has three thrilling episodes from the Reeder casebook: 'Red Aces' about a man who gambles high and lives in fear; 'Kennedy the Con Man', reveals the impeccable mask stripped from a fiend, and finally 'The Case of Jo Attymer', a thoroughly intriguing mystery involving murder on London's Thames.

The Crook in Crimson

The Guv'nor and Other Short Stories (US title: Mr. Reeder Returns) (1932) A prequel of sorts, set in the pre-Belman days. When Larry O'Ryan decides to become a burglar he attends night school to study ballistics, then secures a job at a safe-maker's. After three successful robberies Larry is caught by Mr J.G. Reeder. An unlikely friendship develops and on Saturdays they can be seen together at the British Museum or the Tower. One day Larry rescues Miss Lane Leonard, daughter of a millionaire. The disappearance of one and a half million pounds in gold bullion and a series of bank frauds baffles Scotland Yard. But not Mr J.G. Reeder.

Note: Edgar Wallace used the name "J.G. Reeder" for two different characters. The young hero of the novel Room 13, John Gray Reeder, is an undercover police Chief Inspector who uses the J.G. Reeder persona as a red herring. The hero of the other "Reeder" stories, John G. Reeder, is the actual main detective character who is timid, middle-aged and works in the Public Prosecutor's Office.

Interestingly Western writer J.T. Edson in a tribute to Wallace actually featured Reeder in two of his Company Z novels, and in fact enlarged the Reeder component to three Reeders an uncle and two nephews!

  • Classification : Classic Crime & Adventure/Thrillers
  • Pub Date : JUN 20, 2023
  • Imprint : YELLOWBACK
  • Page Extent : 668
  • Binding : PB
  • ISBN : 9789357310963
  • Price : INR 899

Edgar Wallace

Richard Horatio Edgar Wallace was a British writer who virtually invented the thriller market and was the first to introduce police characters as leading protagonists rather than amateur sleuths.

Born into poverty as an illegitimate child in London, Wallace left school at the age of 12. He joined the army at age 21 and was a war correspondent during the Second Boer War for Reuters and the Daily Mail. Struggling with debt (he had a weakness for the horses), he left South Africa, returned to London and began writing thrillers to raise income, publishing books including The Four Just Men. Drawing on his time as a reporter in the Congo, Wallace serialised short stories in magazines and published adventure stories featuring his first series character Sanders of the River. He signed with Hodder and Stoughton in 1921 and became an internationally recognized author.

Wallace was such a prolific writer that it was claimed that one of every four books published in England were written by him. Apart from his reportage, Wallace wrote screen plays, poetry, historical non-fiction, 18 stage plays, 957 short stories and over 170 novels, 12 in 1929 alone. Over 160 films have been made from Wallace's work.

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