To Wake the Dead

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9780020187509: To Wake the Dead

Christopher Kent is a wealthy young man who has made a thousand-pound bet with his friend Dan Reaper that he cannot start at Johannesburg without a penny in his pocket and meet his friend at the Royal Scarlet Hotel in Piccadilly in London, England, some weeks later. Twenty-four hours before the deadline, Kent is in front of the hotel, penniless and not having eaten for a day, and decides to order breakfast and charge it to a room in the hotel. After he's finished breakfast, the hotel staff ask him to go and wake up his "wife" because a previous guest has left a valuable bracelet hidden in the room. Upon arrival at room 707, the group is met by a "Do not disturb" sign upon which has been scrawled "Dead woman"

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About the Author:

John Dickson Carr, the master of the locked-room mystery, was born in Uniontown, Pennsylvania, the son of a US Congressman. He studied law in Paris before settling in England where he married an Englishwoman, and he spent most of his writing career living in Great Britain. Widely regarded as one of the greatest Golden Age mystery writers, his work featured apparently impossible crimes often with seemingly supernatural elements. He modelled his affable and eccentric series detective Gideon Fell on G. K. Chesterton, and wrote a number of novels and short stories, including his series featuring Henry Merrivale, under the pseudonym Carter Dickson. He was one of only two Americans admitted to the British Detection club, and was highly praised by other mystery writers. Dorothy L. Sayers said of him that 'he can create atmosphere with an adjective, alarm with allusion, or delight with a rollicking absurdity'. In 1950 he was awarded the first of two prestigious Edgar Awards by the Mystery Writers of America, and was presented with their Grand Master Award in 1963. He died in Greenville, South Carolina in 1977.

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