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The Old Man in the Corner

Baroness Emmuska Orczy

Book Overview: 

Created by Baroness Orczy, author of the famous Scarlet Pimpernel series, The Old Man in the Corner was one of the earliest armchair detectives, popping up with so many others in the wake of the huge popularity of the Sherlock Holmes stories. The Old Man relies mostly upon sensationalistic “penny dreadful” newspaper accounts, with the occasional courtroom visit for extra laughs. He narrates all this information (while tying complicated knots in a piece of string) to a Lady Journalist who frequents the same tea-shop. (Summary from Wikipedia)

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .allop, and came up—quite close to the boundary of Lord Arthur Skelmerton's grounds—upon a group of three men, two of whom seemed to be wrestling vigorously with one another, whilst the third was lying face downwards on the ground. As soon as the constables drew near, one of the wrestlers shouted more vigorously, and with a certain tone of authority:

"'Here, you fellows, hurry up, sharp; the brute is giving me the slip!'

"But the brute did not seem inclined to do anything of the sort; he certainly extricated himself with a violent jerk from his assailant's grasp, but made no attempt to run away. The constables had quickly dismounted, whilst he who had shouted for help originally added more quietly:

"'My name is Skelmerton. This is the boundary of my property. I was smoking a cigar at the pavilion over there with a friend when I heard loud voices, followed by a cry and a groan. I hurried down the steps, and saw this poor fellow . . . Read More

Community Reviews

La Baronesa de Orczy plantea casos relatados por la periodista, Polly Burton, a un anciano (al menos, en los ojos de una joven periodista de principios del siglo XX), y éste los resuelve sin moverse del sillón.
Son casos interesantes y entretenidos que se leen muy rápido. El anciano resuelve los cas

The old man in the corner is for all those armchair detectives who like to solve a murder from the clues in the pages. It is deduction from what the facts tell - though almost all of them are cases where the police have obviously missed something.

The book was a mixed bag since I felt the author held

"Il vero segreto di un delitto impunito è lo studio della natura umana"

"Il vecchio nell'angolo" è una raccolta di racconti pubblicati tra il 1901 e il 1909 dalla Baronessa Emma Orczy.
Membro del Detection Club sin dai primordi, sebbene non presenziasse alle varie riunioni per i suoi continui viaggi

Baroness Orczy is mostly associated with her famous Scarlett Pimpernel and though that’s a seriously entertaining moniker, it isn’t quite my speed. But then again the lady was versatile (and quite popular back in her day, albeit more so commercially than critically) and times being what they were (t

The Old Man in the Corner by Baroness Emma Orczy was a little gem. I'd read her adventure, The Scarlet Pimpernal, and had enjoyed quite a bit. While I was reading it, my wife mentioned that she remembered a radio series she'd listened too many years ago, which was based on Orczy's book about The Old

3 1/2 stars, somewhat good, somewhat dull and somewhat slow.

I liked this book for its unique structure - an old man, sitting by himself in the corner of a tea-shop, offering plausible solutions for cases which have baffled the police - when I read it some time ago. But when I read it second time around, I found the mysteries to be rather contrived, the writi

Young journalist Polly Burton gets into the habit of having her lunch at the ABC cafe after her first encounter with a disreputable old man who, all the while obsessively making knots in a grimy piece of string he carries, bends her ear, Ancient Mariner-style, with his tales. In his instance the tal

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