The Measure of Malice: Scientific Detection Stories
Mystery crime fiction written in the Golden Age of Murder
The detective's role is simple: to catch the culprit. Yet behind each casual observation lies a learned mind, trained on finding the key to the mystery. Crimes, whatever their form, are often best solved through deliberations of logic—preferably amid complicated gadgetry and a pile of hefty scientific volumes.
While it’s hard to pick a favorite, I have to settle on “The New Cement” by Freeman Wills Crofts — even though I have to eat crow to admit it. I had read a short story of Croft’s before in a previous Edwards anthology, and then tried Mystery in the Channel, which I found lackluster. I will have ...more
*Many thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for a copy in exch ...more
I found it interesting that a lot of the authors had pen names, the characters all stopped for lunch or dinner, everyone had servants, women were very much the weaker sex and being murdered by dry ice was a shattering experience.
Dr Morelle was a highlight for me with his cringe worthy ...more
Overall, I would recommend this as an ...more
The Boscombe Valley Mystery by Arthur Conan Doyle 
I have read this one be ...more
Another collection of vintage crime from the winning partnership of Martin Edwards and the British Library, this one contains fourteen stories sharing the theme of scientific detectives or clues. There’s a lot of imagination on display as the authors seek to find unique problems to put before their detectives – everything from Sherlock Holmes and his expert knowledge of cigar ash, to laryngoscopes, anaphylactic shock, new-fangled “contact glasses” and a different twist o ...more
The authors as always vary. Well known authors include Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Dorothy Sayers. But some of these authors most readers will never have heard of, such as C. J. Cutcliffe Hyne and C. E. Bechhofer Roberts.
I could have done without H. ...more
The opening one is actually a Sherlock Holmes wonderful story and sets the tone and elegance of writing which is so characteristic for all the writers.
Apart from the style of writing which is calm and collected and not frenzied in the least despite the goriness of the actual murders, there is a great deal of intelligent detective skills utilized throughout and a measure of scientific deduction which a ...more
While Edwards includes a few of the most well-known authors like Arthur Conan Doyle and Dorothy Sayers. His primary focus, though, is on those who have been lost to time such as Robert Eusta ...more
“The Measure of Malice” is one of the short story anthologies. There is always a theme to the collection, and in this case it is s ...more
Fourteen more intriguing, but unfortunately forgotten, tales from famous (Arthur Conan Doyle) and not authors. The theme of these tales is unusual weapons and unique ways to prove the detectives’ suppositions All lean heavily on the new science of the day.
It’s amazing how casual w ...more
The detectives in this collection are masters of scientific deduction employing principles of chemistry, the latest technological innovations and an irresistible logical br ...more
A knowledgeable introduction is followed by stories from writers who are both well and lesser known. Some of the authors represented are Conan Doyle, Dorothy L Sayers and Freeman Wills Crofts. There are fourteen stories in all.
If you find that ...more
The stories made anything on "Murder She Wrote" look amazing, adult, and well-planned. Each story felt as if it was written for a G-rated audience a step removed from Nancy Drew.
The storytelling was often weighed down with flowery prose and, once again, crucial information was kept from the reader as if the writers weren't smart enough to give us hints we weren't smart enough to catch.
Of all the stories, only one stood out for being well written with tighter prose, and that is ...more
*The Boscombe Valley Mystery / Arthur Conan Doyle --
The Horror of Studley Grange / L. T. Meade and Robert Eustace --
The Tragedy of a Third Smoker / C. J. Cutcliffe Hyne --3
*The Man Who Disappeared / L. T. Meade and Clifford Halifax --
The Cyprian Bees / Anthony Wynne --3
The English Filter / C. E. Bechhofer Roberts --
The Contents of a Mare's Nest / R. Austin Freeman --3
*After Death the Doctor / J. J. Connington --
The Broken Toad / H. C. Bailey --3
*In the Teeth of the Evidence / Dorothy ...more