The Strange Schemes of Randolph Mason - Melville Davisson Post 1896 - G. P. Putnam's Sons, New York - First Edition A fine and thus rare copy of this ground breaking work of detective fiction which controversially laid out the legal loopholes on which a criminal could carry out his plans on the basis that he would be acquitted in court (the relevant statutes are cited). Obviously an unscrupulous and highly intelligent lawyer is required, that man being Randolph Mason, who features in this collection of seven stories.

Housed in custom clamshell case, with additional signed compliments slip from the author loosely laid in.

‘Post (1871-1930) studied law at West Virginia University in 1892, several years spent in the practice of criminal and corporation law in his native state gave him the background for these short stories. The book created something of a furore, moralists objecting that it gave too much advice to criminals. Post retorted that nothing but good could come of exposing the law’s defects. And in fact the second story ‘
The Corpus Delicti’ is credited with hastening a long need change in criminal procedure.’ - Howard Haycraft, ‘Murder for Pleasure’.
  ‘In 1896 Melville Davisson Post made the first of his two momentous contributions to the detective-crime short story. The publication of The Strange Schemes of Randolph Mason introduced the first 'criminal' lawyer in detective fiction ... The character of Randolph Mason was an important and historic innovation.’ (Queen's Quorum).

Provenance: Elizabeth Cass Goddard, with her bookplate, Barney Wisecarver, with his name to verso of front free endpaper, and later from the Lawrence M. Solomon Collection of Mystery, Detective & Science Fiction, with his bookplate to the inside of clamshell case.

Reference: Ellery Queen,
Queen’s Quorum, 20. Haycraft, Murder for Pleasure, 94.

Small octavo (18 x 13.5 cm) pp. [2] v [1] 280. In publisher’s beige buckram, spine lettered in green, front board blocked in white and green with white lettering and decorations.

Lawrence Solomon, MD (1931-2014) was a world-renowned paediatric dermatologist who wrote many textbooks and articles on the subject. He wrote or co-authored 8 books, including a pioneering 1973 text “neonatal Dermatology”. He was Chairman and Professor fofDermatology at the University of Illinois Medical Center from 1974-1995. He grew up in Montreal speaking Yiddish, learned English and French and later became proficient in reading Italian and Spanish while studying medicine at the University of Geneva. He picked up Dutch from his future wife, Mieke Volten, born in Indonesia of Dutch Parents.

He started collecting at the age of 12, first with comic books and eventually in what he called “Mysteries and Supernatural & Science Fiction.” He became a devoted Sherlockian after meeting Arthur Conan Doyle’s son while studying in Geneva. As a renowned academician, he travelled extensively, which allowed him to pursue serious collecting wherever he landed. His collection of some 6,000 books contained many elusive title, several of which only a very few are known to exist. He worked surrounded by his books, listening to music and in his spare time reading dealers catalogues and writing a comprehensive 180 page catalogue of his own.
  Condition: Fine, but for some gentle toning to spine, in fine case   Ref: 109088   Price: HK$ 20,000