Edgar Hodgkiss is roped into opening and closing the curtains between the acts of an amateur dramatic production. But after reading the scriptHodgkiss soon decides that it has been written with murder in mind. And he is not wrong. At the climax of the unlikely plot the hero of the piece is stabbed to death while tied into a chair. The prop knife, made to retract on contact, and the real knife, that obviously did the job, both have disappeared. It is Hodgkiss' daughter, Esme, who made her stage debut in the role of a scantily clad French maid, who makes the sharp observation that leads to Hodgkiss exposing the murderer. Behind the scenes it was the corrupt faction of the Kanundda Council that was the architect of the whole deadly performance.Readers of the mystery genre are familiar with the scenario where a person is kidnapped and held prisoner in a basement or cellar. The problem facingthe captive is how to make contact with those on the outside who can mount a rescue. In these two stories, Hodgkiss and the Miraculous Message and Hodgkiss and the erroneous eMail, we see two solutions to the problem and it is Hodgkiss' glamourous friend, Pat Strong, who helps provide the logical answers to these two intriguing problems.
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