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The Oleander Press

Death of an Editor

Death of an Editor

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“This is Inspector Brews,” she said. “Something tragic has happened. Mr. Hay Smith has been found dead.”
“What was it? Heart attack?” he asked.
“Murder, sir,” said Brews carefully. “His head has been half blown off by an explosive bullet, or dum-dum.”
Now Mr. Sape did start, and looked horrified. “How ghastly!”


Inspector Brews, having been summoned to Marsh House to meet the chief editor of The Daily Record, instead finds Hay Smith’s body, still clutching the torn corners of several sheets of paper, near to an open window in newspaper proprietor, Sir James Sitheby’s, study.

Following The Essex Murders (1930), his second case sees Brews faced with a motley crew of suspects at Sir James’ country house - including journalists, an editor, a gossip-writer and a novelist, all seemingly with an axe to grind.

In a wonderfully intriguing case, red herrings a-plenty suffuse Death of an Editor (1931), with Brews trawling everyone’s alibis, needing a watchful eye and a steady hand to reel in the perpetrator. But which of them is it?

Vernon Loder (1881-1938) was a pseudonym for John George Haslette Vahey, who also wrote as Henrietta Clandon, John Haslette, Anthony Lang, John Mowbray, Walter Proudfoot and George Varney.

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