The Fugitive Sleuth
(1918) was Footner's first mystery story. It was followed by Thieves' Wit
(1918), The Substitute Millionaire
(1919), and many others. Several of his mysteries are on MobileRead. Today The Fugitive Sleut
h is a very scarce book - World Cat
(2012) lists fewer than 10 libraries in the world that have the original book although more have microform copies. According to this source, it was never published in the United States; there were two printings in London in 1918 and 1919, and one in Denmark 1922. This epub is based on a microform created in Canada in 1996.
A struggling artist, Neil Ottoway, is much attracted to a young woman artist living in an adjacent apartment in a poor section of New York City. When he sees her in a park, she appears extraordinarily frightened and asks him to bring two photographs and her drawings to her from her apartment. Upon visiting her apartment Neil discovers the murdered body of their landlord in a closet. Certain that the woman could not be the murderer, rather than reporting the murder to the police, he carries the body to his own apartment where he plans to get rid of it during the night, and scrubs the closet floor. His plans quickly go awry and he’s blamed for the murder. While evading the police he attempts to find the murderer. One of the most enjoyable aspects of the book is Footner's detailed description of life in and around 1918 New York City.
v1.5 corrects a number of ocr errors in addition to minor change in title page and addition of Footner's 1921 photo.
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