Death at the Helm. A Dr. Priestley Mystery - John Rhode 1941 - Dodd, New York - First American Edition Featuring Dr. Lancelot Priestley ’one of the enduring figures of detective fiction, an awesome old party with a passion for truth and a restless, analytic brain that forbids compromise and marshals evidence with mathematical precision’.   John Rhode, the punning pseudonym of Major Cecil John Charles Street (1884-1965), a prolific British detective novelist who also wrote as Miles Burton, was the author of 144 mystery novels. He served in France during the First World War, and afterwards in Ireland, he was awarded the Military Cross. Under his own name he wrote widely on contemporary European history and politics. As Rhode he produced sixty-nine novels with the mathematician Dr. Lancelot Priestley as detective, and as Miles Burton he wrote of the amateur detective Desmond Morris.

First American edition, copyright page stating ‘Copyright 1941’ and no mention of additional printings. First published the same year by Collins, London.

References: Herbert, ‘
The Oxford Companion to Crime & Mystery Writing’, 387. Haycraft, ‘Murder for Pleasure’, 155. Reilly, ’Twentieth-Century Crime and Mystery Writers’ (1980), 1257. Cooper & Pike, ‘Detective Fiction’, 258.

Octavo (book size 19.2x13.6cm), pp. [6] 282. In publisher’s pale blue cloth lettered in black to spine and with publisher’s ‘Red Badge Detective’ emblem in black to upper board, fore-edge untrimmed, grey ‘Red Badge Detective’ endpapers illustrated in red. Dust jacket priced ‘$2.00’ to upper corner of front flap. Dust jacket with minor colour touch up to edges and folds of spine and front panel.
  Condition: Near fine, light rubbing to spine ends, a few marks to pages fore-edge, in very good dust jacket with some wear along edges and folds, more so to tail of spine, gentle rubbing to rear panel, with minor colour touch up to edges and folds of spine and front panel.   Ref: 110317   Price: HK$ 4,500