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The Red Thumb Mark

R. Austin Freeman

Book Overview: 

Missing diamonds, untouched safe, two blood smeared thumb prints and a mysterious Mr X. If these are present, Dr Thorndyke must be there too. Will he be able to solve this case?

The Red Thumb Mark is the first novel of Freeman’s best-selling Thorndyke series.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .ll thing and quite without any bearing on this affair. But it has been a great trouble to me since it has to some extent put a barrier between Reuben and me; and we used to be such close friends. And I have blamed myself for letting it influence me—perhaps unjustly—in my opinion of him. I will tell you about it, though I expect you will think me very foolish.

"You must know, then, that Reuben and I used, until about six months ago, to be very much together, though we were only friends, you understand. But we were on the footing of relatives, so there was nothing out of the way in it. Reuben is a keen student of ancient and mediaeval art, in which I also am much interested, so we used to visit the museums and galleries together and get a great deal of pleasure from comparing our views and impressions of what we saw.

"About six months ago, Walter took me aside one day and, with a very serious face, asked me if there was any kind of understa. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I enjoyed The Red Thumb Mark a lot. First published in 1907 it does show its age in many ways, but the language and style engaged me and in places amused me greatly, so I found it a very enjoyable read.

Dr. Thorndyke was a very early fictional practitioner of forensic science. Readers were somewhat f

I am having a sort of mystery reviewing spree on one of my FB groups, because of a recent meeting on the future of mystery writing in Malayalam which I attended. It brought back fond memories of a largely misspent youth huddled up in my room, following intrepid sleuths, mysterious strangers and femm

This story is not only surprisingly charming to the reader but also unexpectedly relevant to the contemporary fad for forensic procedurals. Thorndyke seems, in many ways, to having been designed to be an interesting not quite anti-Holmes. Thorndyke does not call into question the necessity for the c

Fingerprints. A single print, being unique - not even identical twins have the same fingerprints - that single print found in the right place at the right time is sufficient to disclose the perpetrator of a crime.

Actually, there are those who claim that identifying and matching fingerprints is not s

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