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CHAPTER I THE CHRISTMAS TREE Two old ladies sat in the corner of the drawing-room. The younger—a colonial cousin of the elder—was listening eagerly to gossip which dealt with English society in general, and Rickwell society in particular. They presumably assisted in the entertainment of the children already gathered tumultuously round the Christmas tree, provided by Mr. Morley; but Mrs. Parry's budget of scandal was too interesting... more...

CHAPTER I. I GO TO STYLES The intense interest aroused in the public by what was known at the time as "The Styles Case" has now somewhat subsided. Nevertheless, in view of the world-wide notoriety which attended it, I have been asked, both by my friend Poirot and the family themselves, to write an account of the whole story. This, we trust, will effectually silence the sensational rumours which still persist. I will therefore briefly set down... more...

CHAPTER I It was very early in the morning, it was scarcely dawn, when the young man started upon a walk of twenty-five miles to reach Alton, where he was to be assistant to the one physician in the place, Doctor Thomas Gordon, or as he was familiarly called, "Doc." Gordon. The young man's name was James Elliot. He had just graduated, and this was to be his first experience in the practice of his profession of medicine. He was in his twenties.... more...

THE ADVENTURE OF THE EMPTY HOUSE It was in the spring of the year 1894 that all London was interested, and the fashionable world dismayed, by the murder of the Honourable Ronald Adair under most unusual and inexplicable circumstances. The public has already learned those particulars of the crime which came out in the police investigation, but a good deal was suppressed upon that occasion, since the case for the prosecution was so overwhelmingly... more...

PREFACE In its original form, "The Mystery of a Hansom Cab" has reached the sale of 375,000 copies in this country, and some few editions in the United States of America. Notwithstanding this, the present publishers have the best of reasons for believing, that there are thousands of persons whom the book has never reached. The causes of this have doubtless been many, but chief among them was the form of the publication itself. It is for this... more...


HENRI RENÉ ALBERT GUY DE MAUPASSANT The Necklace She was one of those pretty and charming girls who are sometimes, as if by a mistake of destiny, born in a family of clerks. She had no dowry, no expectations, no means of being known, understood, loved, wedded, by any rich and distinguished man; and she let herself be married to a little clerk at the Ministry of Public Instruction. She dressed plainly because she could not dress well,... more...

CHAPTER I. THE DETECTIVE AND THE BANKER—A REMARKABLE NARRATIVE—A PECULIAR TRAIL—MILLIONS WITH NO OWNER—A GREAT TASK LOOMING UP FOR JACK—A MOMENT OF EXPECTANCY. "Your name is John Alvarez?" "That is my name, sir." An elderly man was seated at a table and a young man stood opposite to him. The elderly person was a well-known banker who had retired from business, and he had sent for the detective who had just... more...

CHAPTER I. AN INVITATION FOR TOM AND HUCK [Note: Strange as the incidents of this story are, theyare not inventions, but facts—even to the public confessionof the accused. I take them from an old-time Swedishcriminal trial, change the actors, and transfer the scenesto America. I have added some details, but only a couple ofthem are important ones. — M. T.] WELL, it was the next spring after me and Tom Sawyer set our old nigger Jim... more...

Bonnie Dundee stretched out a long and rather fine pair of legs, regarding the pattern of his dark-blue socks with distinct satisfaction; then he rested his black head against the rich upholstery of an armchair not at all intended for his use. His cheerful blue eyes turned at last—but not too long a last—to the small, upright figure seated at a typewriter desk in the corner of the office. "Good morning, Penny," he called out lazily,... more...

PART I "We ought never to do wrong when people are looking." I The first scene is in the country, in Virginia; the time, 1880. There has been a wedding, between a handsome young man of slender means and a rich young girl—a case of love at first sight and a precipitate marriage; a marriage bitterly opposed by the girl's widowed father. Jacob Fuller, the bridegroom, is twenty-six years old, is of an old but unconsidered family which... more...