Death Before Breakfast
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Published Date: 1962
On her way to Church early one November morning, Mrs. Jump sees a dead body in the gutter in July Street. Fearing to investigate, she hurries on, but her conscience finally convinces her that she ought to return and report her discovery. Much to her relief, however, the body has vanished. Mrs. Jump happens to be Mrs. Littlejohn’s daily help and casually mentions her adventure. Following one of his famous hunches, Superintendent Littlejohn, of Scotland Yard, decides to check her story and before very long, a full-blown investigation is in full swing. July Street is a queer neighbourhood and some queer people live there. A doctor in disgrace and his simpleton of a sister; a monstrous fat man who thinks he owns the street and everyone in it; a scared little French polisher, whose children have whooping-cough. Before the case is finally wound up, Littlejohn finds himself in France again, visiting the lovely valley of the River Yonne and Paris, where he investigates a gang of burglars who run a jazz-band.
First published in 1962, Death Before Breakfast is a classic crime, full of intrigue, mysterious motives, and ingenious speculation.