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Devlin the Barber

B. L. Farjeon

Book Overview: 

The stabbing death of a beautiful young woman in a London park at night and the disappearance of her sister; a shocked and heartbroken young suitor; a terrified landlady and her simple husband; a recently unemployed man, the narrator, who is requested to investigate the crime; and the mysterious title character who, as his name suggests, has a devilishness about him in his psychic ability to read minds and to perform other supernatural acts. These are some of the individuals in this inventive, absorbing mystery by the prolific and popular British author, B. L. Farjeon. There are really two mysteries here: the murder and the strange – person?

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Well, then, to show you that I am in earnest, I lay on the table Bank of England notes for a hundred pounds. Here they are, on account."

To my astonishment he had pulled out his pocket-book and extracted ten ten-pound notes, and there they lay on the table before me. I would have entreated him to take them back, feeling that it would be the falsest of false pretences to accept them, but before I could speak again he was gone.

I called my wife into the room, and told her what had passed. She regarded it in the same light as myself, but I noted a little wistful look in her eyes as she glanced at the bank-notes.

"A thousand pounds!" she sighed, half-longingly, half-humorously. "If we could only call it ours! Why, it would make our fortune!"

"It would, my dear," I said, wishing in my heart of hearts that I had a thousand pounds of my own to throw . . . Read More

Community Reviews

It's like a 3.7 rounded up

While this book is by no means great, I seriously do not get the low, low ratings here. Two stars???? Sheesh!! It is in every sense of the word as different from contemporary Victorian crime as it can possibly be, and while I'm going to have to do some digging, it may just