Masterpieces of Mystery in Four Volumes by Joseph Lewis
The Masterpieces of Mystery in Four Volumes by Joseph Lewis is a collection of 40 short stories that span four different types of mystery: ghost stories, riddle stories, detective stories, and mystic-humorous stories. Each volume contains 10 stories, and each story is preceded by a brief introduction by the editor, Joseph Lewis French, who gives some background information and commentary on the author and the story.
The collection was first published in 1920, and it was intended to showcase the best examples of mystery writing from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The stories were selected from various sources, such as magazines, anthologies, and books, and they represent a wide range of styles, themes, and nationalities. Some of the authors are well-known, such as Edgar Allan Poe, Wilkie Collins, and Robert Louis Stevenson, while others are obscure, such as Cleveland Moffett, Katherine Rickford, and Villiers de l’Isle Adam.
The collection is a treasure trove for mystery lovers, as it offers a variety of stories that will appeal to different tastes and preferences. Whether you like spooky tales of the supernatural, puzzling mysteries that challenge your logic, clever sleuths who solve crimes, or humorous stories that poke fun at the genre, you’ll find something to enjoy in the Masterpieces of Mystery in Four Volumes by Joseph Lewis.
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Here’s a brief summary of what each volume contains:
- Volume 1: Ghost Stories. This volume features 10 stories that deal with the paranormal, such as haunted houses, apparitions, curses, and possession. Some of the stories are scary, some are sad, and some are even funny. Some of the highlights include “The Listener” by Algernon Blackwood, a chilling story of a man who hears voices in his apartment; “The Horla” by Guy de Maupassant, a classic tale of a man who is tormented by an invisible entity; and “The Yellow Cat” by Wilbur Daniel Steele, a humorous story of a cat that causes trouble for a couple of thieves.
- Volume 2: Riddle Stories. This volume features 10 stories that present a mystery that is not solved by a detective, but by the reader. The stories are designed to test your wits and logic, and they often involve a twist or a surprise at the end. Some of the stories are based on real events, such as “The Great Valdez Sapphire” by Anonymous, a story of a famous jewel that was stolen and recovered; and “Letter to Sura” by Pliny the Younger, a story of a ghost that appeared to a Roman senator. Some of the stories are purely fictional, such as “The Mysterious Card” by Cleveland Moffett, a story of a man who receives a card with a mysterious message; and “The Oblong Box” by Edgar Allan Poe, a story of a man who travels with a strange cargo.
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- Volume 3: Detective Stories. This volume features 10 stories that feature a detective who solves a crime, usually by using clues, logic, and deduction. The stories are typical of the golden age of detective fiction, and they showcase some of the most famous and influential sleuths in the genre, such as Sherlock Holmes, C. Auguste Dupin, and Father Brown. Some of the stories are classic examples of the genre, such as “The Purloined Letter” by Edgar Allan Poe, a story of a stolen letter that contains a state secret; and “The Red-Headed League” by Arthur Conan Doyle, a story of a bizarre scheme that involves a pawnbroker and a bank robbery. Some of the stories are more unusual, such as “The Doomdorf Mystery” by Melville Davisson Post, a story of a murder that is solved by a lawyer who uses psychology and mathematics; and “The Problem of Cell 13” by Jacques Futrelle, a story of a detective who bets that he can escape from a prison cell.
- Volume 4: Mystic-Humorous Stories. This volume features 10 stories that combine mystery with humor, and often with a touch of the supernatural or the fantastic. The stories are meant to entertain and amuse, and they often parody or satirize the conventions of the genre. Some of the stories are whimsical, such as “The Man Who Went Too Far” by E.F. Benson, a story of a man who seeks to commune with nature and finds more than he bargained for; and “The Transferred Ghost” by Frank R. Stockton, a story of a ghost who switches places with another ghost. Some of the stories are witty, such as “The Adventure of the Hansom Cab” by Rudyard Kipling, a story of a cab driver who helps Sherlock Holmes solve a case; and “The Ghost-Extinguisher” by Gelett Burgess, a story of a man who invents a device that can eliminate ghosts.
As you can see, the Masterpieces of Mystery in Four Volumes by Joseph Lewis offers a rich and diverse selection of stories that will keep you entertained and intrigued for hours. But how can you make the most of your reading experience? Here are some tips on how to enjoy the collection:
- Read the introductions. The editor, Joseph Lewis French, provides some useful and interesting information about each story and its author. He also gives some insights into the history and development of the mystery genre, and how each story fits into it. Reading the introductions will help you appreciate the context and significance of each story, and also learn more about the genre and its evolution.
- Read the stories in order. The collection is arranged in a logical and chronological order, starting with the earliest and most primitive forms of mystery, and ending with the most modern and sophisticated ones. Reading the stories in order will help you see the progression and variation of the genre, and how each story builds on or deviates from the previous ones. You’ll also notice some connections and references between the stories, such as recurring characters, themes, or motifs.
- Read the stories aloud. The stories in the collection are written in a lively and engaging style, and they often use dialogue, narration, and description to create a vivid and immersive atmosphere. Reading the stories aloud will help you enjoy the language and the tone of each story, and also enhance your comprehension and retention. You can also read the stories with a friend or a family member, and discuss your thoughts and opinions on them.
- Read the stories critically. The stories in the collection are not only entertaining, but also educational and thought-provoking. They often raise questions and issues that are relevant to the human condition, such as morality, justice, truth, identity, and reality. Reading the stories critically will help you analyze and evaluate the arguments and perspectives of each story, and also reflect on your own views and values. You can also compare and contrast the stories with each other, or with other works of literature or art, and see how they relate or differ.
- Read the stories creatively. The stories in the collection are not only informative, but also inspirational and imaginative. They often stimulate your curiosity and creativity, and invite you to explore the possibilities and implications of each story. Reading the stories creatively will help you generate your own ideas and solutions, and also express your own feelings and emotions. You can also write your own stories, based on or inspired by the stories in the collection, and see how you can apply or extend the techniques and elements of the genre.
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- Q: Who is Joseph Lewis French?
- A: Joseph Lewis French (1858-1936) was an American editor, journalist, and author. He compiled and edited several anthologies of fiction and non-fiction, including Masterpieces of Mystery in Four Volumes, Great Sea Stories, The Best Psychic Stories, and The Book of the Grand Canyon. He also wrote biographies of Abraham Lincoln, Joan of Arc, and Robert E. Lee.
- Q: What are some other examples of riddle stories, detective stories, and mystic-humorous stories?
- A: Some other examples of riddle stories are “The Lady or the Tiger?” by Frank R. Stockton, “The Monkey’s Paw” by W.W. Jacobs, and “The Necklace” by Guy de Maupassant. Some other examples of detective stories are “The Murders in the Rue Morgue” by Edgar Allan Poe, “The Adventure of the Speckled Band” by Arthur Conan Doyle, and “The Murder of Roger Ackroyd” by Agatha Christie. Some other examples of mystic-humorous stories are “The Canterville Ghost” by Oscar Wilde, “The Devil and Tom Walker” by Washington Irving, and “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” by Mark Twain.
- Q: How can I check if the stories are free from plagiarism and AI detection?
- A: You can use online tools such as Copyscape or Quetext to check if the stories are free from plagiarism, and GLTR or Bot or Not to check if the stories are free from AI detection. However, these tools are not 100% accurate or reliable, and they may not catch all instances of plagiarism or AI generation. The best way to ensure originality and authenticity is to read the stories carefully and critically, and compare them with other sources and works.
The Masterpieces of Mystery in Four Volumes by Joseph Lewis is a collection of 40 short stories that cover four different subgenres of mystery: ghost stories, riddle stories, detective stories, and mystic-humorous stories. The collection is a valuable and enjoyable resource for mystery lovers, as it offers a variety of stories that will appeal to different tastes and preferences, and also provide a historical and literary perspective on the genre and its evolution. The collection is also a challenge and an inspiration for mystery writers, as it showcases some of the best examples of mystery writing from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and also invites them to explore the possibilities and implications of the genre. The collection is available online for free at Project Gutenberg, and it can be read in order, aloud, critically, and creatively. The collection is also a source of mental gymnastics, as it stimulates the curiosity and creativity of the reader, and tests their wits and logic. The collection is a masterpiece of mystery, and a mystery of masterpiece.
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