Rediscovered: A Library in the Last Redoubt

Heard from Kevin Cook, noted book and pulp collector. He’s scouring his library — as seen above — in search of obscure stuff he can bring to the attention of The Publick.

Kevin tells me he’s thinking about writing a piece about A Studio Mystery — “because the novel is excellent and its detective Matthew Grimlock is fascinating, and I can honestly say that it is the best pre-1900 piece of mystery or detective fiction that I have ever read that was not written by Arthur Conan Doyle. 

“Frank Aubrey ranks ahead of his fellow Brits of that era who are more acclaimed today, listed in Queen’s Quorum or such — including Percy Brebner, Harris Burland and Baroness Orczy, all three of whom also wrote at least one lost race novel, The Fortress of Yadasara (a.k.a. in the USA as The Knight of the Silver Star), The Princess Thora and By the Gods Beloved.

“I have those books, although sadly none are signed, although The Knight of the Silver Star from 1907 has the second oldest dust jacket in my collection.”

You’ve got a global pandemic howling outside your door, but if you’re inside with a deep enough library, you’ve got other matters of quaint and curious lore you can ponder.

Plus I heard as well from noted Autograph Hound Brian Leno, who keeps sending his tendrils out from his barricaded domain, and just landed — finally landed — a John Hancock from the adventurous mountaineer Edward Whymper. He’s been hunting for that signature since he was in knee pants, and even if he has to huddle inside, Brian is one happy camper.

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