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“If I meet any dragons I’ll run away.”
When Mary Borlase, English governess of the little Countess Nadine, escapes from Russia during the Great War, she brings with her jewels belonging to the ill-fated Romanoffs, including a famous emerald, the Eye of Nero. Mary dies of pneumonia a few days after reaching England, in a room over her brother’s antique shop. What has become of the now missing jewels? Has she hidden them somewhere, or entrusted them to someone before her death?
Years later a Russian waiter sells a secret twice over, and pays the ultimate price. The search for the emerald has begun.
For a man calling himself Mr. Brown, and his gang, it is first an adventure, but becomes a matter of life and death. For Martin Drury, chicken-farming in Sussex it brings the gleam of romance and a chance of knight errantry. And for Inspector Hugh Collier of Scotland Yard, young and ambitious, backing his intuitions against the opinions of his superiors, it is a case full of pitfalls, whose issues might spell promotion—or a fatal mark against his name.
The Belfry Murder was originally published in 1933. This new edition features an introduction by crime fiction historian Curtis Evans.