The Cat’s Eye - R. Austin Freeman - ebook

The Cat’s Eye ebook

R. Austin Freeman

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Narrated by Robert Anstey, who is acting as Thorndyke’s counsel as Jervis is away in America. He walks right into a murder scene, attracted by the screams of a beautiful young woman. The dead man is a harmless old bachelor who collects objects of arcane appeal. Several pieces of inscribed jewelry are missing. It’s a strange sort of burglary perpetrated by clumsy amateurs – who nonetheless got clean away. Dr. Thorndyke takes on the case and enlists Anstey as his sidekick. Anstey makes a perfect foil for the great forensics expert, since he misses the significance of everything. There is murder, love, and a form of code to be deciphered to prove an inheritance. The plot, which is ingenious and complex, includes a contested inheritance with a fascinating history. And the reader is treated to plenty of scientific and analytic exploits by Dr. Thorndyke. We watch him test for poison; take impressions of fingerprints, handprints and footprints; detect secret chambers; and interpret coded messages.

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Liczba stron: 472

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Contents

PREFACE

I. IN THE MIDST OF LIFE

II. SIR LAWRENCE DECLARES A VENDETTA

III. THORNDYKE TAKES UP THE INQUIRY

IV. THE LADY OF SHALOTT

V. MR HALLIBURTON’S MASCOT

VI. INTRODUCES AN ANT-EATER AND A DETECTIVE

VII. THE VANISHED HEIRLOOM

VIII. A JACOBITE ROMANCE

IX. EXIT MOAKEY

X. A TIMELY WARNING

XI. THE BLUE HAIR

XII. FROM THE JAWS OF DEATH

XIII. THORNDYKE STATES HIS POSITION

XIV. BEAUCHAMP BLAKE

XV. THE SQUIRE AND THE SLEUTH-HOUND

XVI. MR BRODRIBB’S EMBASSY

XVII. THE SECRET CHAMBER

XVIII. THE CAT’S EYE

XIX. A RELIC OF THE ‘45

XX. QED

PREFACE

By one of those coincidences which are quite inadmissible in fiction, but of frequent occurrence in real life, an incident in the story of The Cat’s Eye has found an almost exact duplicate in an actual case which has been reported in the Press.

The real case was concerned with a most alarming misadventure which befell a distinguished police official of high rank. The fictitious incident occurs in Chapter Ten of this book; and the reading of that chapter will inevitably convey the impression that I have appropriated the real case and incorporated it in my story; a proceeding that the reader might properly consider to be in questionable taste.

It seems, therefore, desirable to explain that Chapter Ten was written some months before the real tragedy occurred. Indeed, by that time, the book was so nearly completed that it was impracticable to eliminate the incident, which was an integral part of the plot.

The coincidence is to be regretted; but worse things might easily have happened. But for the circumstance that I had to lay this book aside to complete some other work, The Cat’s Eye would have been in print when the crime was committed; and it might then have been difficult for any one–even for the author–to believe that the fictitious crime had not furnished the suggestion for the real one.

RAF Gravesend, 19th June 1923.

“The Cat’s Eye,” Hodder & Stoughton, London, 1937 reprint

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This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

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This is a free sample. Please purchase full version of the book to continue.

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