|11-27-2008, 05:48 AM||#1|
Join Date: Oct 2008
Oppenheim, E. Phillips: Zeppelin's Passenger v 1 27 nov 2008
While William LeQueux was the father of the espionage novel, E. Phillips Oppenheim made the genre his own. Like LeQueux, Edgar Wallace, and many other mystery novelists of his generation, E. Phillips Oppenheim was a prolific writer. The author of more than 150 books, Oppenheim produced only one truly classic mystery novel, The Great Impersonation (1920) over the course of a career that spanned fifty-eight productive years.
The so-called Prince of Storytellers, Edward Phillips Oppenheim was born in London on 22 October 1866, to Edward John and Henrietta Susannah Budd Oppenheim. Oppenheim's father, a leather merchant, later took his family to live in Leicester, where the future novelist attended Wyggeston Grammar School, leaving in December 1882 to go to work for his father. Although he continued his connection with the leather business until he was forty, he began writing early, in his spare time. His first novel Expiation (1887), with its publication partly subsidized by his parents, sufficiently impressed the editors of the Sheffield Weekly Telegraph that he was given a contract to write six stories for serialization in that newspaper. Having begun his long career as a published writer, Oppenheim married Elsie Clara Hopkins in 1891; they had one daughter, and, when Oppenheim left the leather business, they went to live in Norfolk. After serving in the British Ministry of Information during World War I, Oppenheim established a winter home in 1922 on the French Riviera, where royalties from his books enabled him to live the life of an aristocrat. The outbreak of World War II forced him to leave France in 1940. Later, when the Germans invaded the Channel Islands, they made his house on Guernsey the local Luftwaffe headquarters. In October 1945 Oppenheim was able to return to Guernsey, where he died on 3 February 1946.
Here is a typical work by Oppenheim: Cleverly told and gripping till the end. This puts some modern thrillers to shame. Characters seem to be a bit shallow, though.
The usual: Got it from PG, gave it the MTH treatment, added a cover of mine (ouch, I know)
PS: I was quite astonished that this novel has never been uploaded to MR before. If it's been done before, I couldn't find it in the search. Here's the list of Oppenheim's work already on MR.
Last edited by mtravellerh; 11-27-2008 at 08:39 AM.
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