The Mikado Jewel Book by Author Fergus Hume

The Mikado Jewel by Fergus

The Mikado Jewel: A Hidden Gem of a Mystery Novel

The Mikado Jewel Book by Author Fergus Hume

The Mikado Jewel is a 1918 mystery novel by Fergus Hume, a prolific and popular British author who wrote over 170 novels, mostly in the crime and adventure genres. The novel is a classic example of the “old dark house” mystery, where a group of people are trapped in a secluded mansion with a murderer on the loose. The novel features a quirky and clever detective, a mysterious and valuable jewel, and a twisty and suspenseful plot that will keep you guessing until the end.

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Fergus Hume was born in England in 1859, but moved to New Zealand with his family when he was four years old. He studied law at the University of Otago, and became a lawyer in 1885. He moved to Melbourne, Australia, the same year, and started writing novels as a hobby. His first novel, The Mystery of a Hansom Cab, was a huge success, and became one of the best-selling books of the 19th century. Hume moved back to England in 1888, and continued to write prolifically until his death in 1932.

One of his lesser-known but equally entertaining novels is The Mikado Jewel, published in 1918. The novel is set in London, during the First World War. The plot revolves around the murder of a widow named Mrs. Durrant, who was staying at the house of her cousin, Sir Hannibal Trevick. Mrs. Durrant was killed in her room, while the rest of the household was away at the theater, or on errands. The only clue is a newspaper advertisement that was found in her pocket, which reads:

Fergusson Wright Hume

Fergus Hume

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The police are baffled by the case, until a strange and shabby man shows up at the scene. He introduces himself as Mr. Reeder, a private detective who specializes in solving unusual and difficult cases. He claims to know the identity of the killer, and the motive behind the murder. He also reveals that the advertisement was a trap set by the killer, who lured Mrs. Durrant to her death.

Mr. Reeder is a fascinating character, who combines the eccentricity of Sherlock Holmes, the humor of Hercule Poirot, and the intuition of Miss Marple. He is a master of disguise, a keen observer, and a brilliant logician. He also has a personal connection to the case, as he was once a friend of Mrs. Durrant’s late husband, John Martin, a wealthy South African diamond merchant. Mr. Reeder knows that the murder has something to do with the Mikado Jewel, a priceless and cursed gem that Martin brought from Japan, and that has been missing for years.

The Mikado Jewel is a novel that will appeal to fans of classic mystery and detective fiction. The novel is full of clues, red herrings, suspects, and surprises. The novel also offers a glimpse into the social and historical context of the early 20th century, such as the impact of the war, the role of the media, the contrast between the rich and the poor, and the influence of exotic cultures. The novel is a testament to Hume’s skill and imagination, and a hidden gem of a mystery novel.

If you are looking for a thrilling and entertaining read, you should definitely check out The Mikado Jewel by Fergus Hume. You can find it online for free at Project Gutenberg, or buy a paperback copy at AmazonYou can also read more about the author and his works at Goodreads.

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  • What is the Mikado Jewel in the novel?
    • The Mikado Jewel is a large and beautiful diamond that was given to John Martin by the Mikado, or the Emperor of Japan, as a token of gratitude for saving his life. The jewel is said to have magical powers, and to bring bad luck to anyone who possesses it. The jewel is the main object of desire and conflict in the novel, as many people are after it for different reasons.
  • Who are the main suspects in the novel?
    • The main suspects in the novel are the members of the Trevick household, who were staying with Mrs. Durrant at the time of her murder. They are:
      • Sir Hannibal Trevick, a retired army officer and a distant cousin of Mrs. Durrant. He is a proud and pompous man, who dislikes Mrs. Durrant and her son, and who has financial troubles.
      • Lady Trevick, a young and beautiful woman, who married Sir Hannibal for his money and title. She is unhappy and bored with her husband, and has a secret lover.
      • Basil Trevick, the son of Sir Hannibal and his first wife. He is a handsome and charming young man, who is a journalist and a spy. He is in love with May Nuttall, Mrs. Durrant’s niece and ward.
      • Mrs. Blexley, the housekeeper of the Trevick household. She is a loyal and efficient woman, who knows a lot about the family secrets and scandals.
      • Dr. Stalletti, an Italian doctor and a friend of Sir Hannibal. He is a sinister and cunning man, who has a hidden agenda and a mysterious past.
  • How does Mr. Reeder solve the case?
    • Mr. Reeder solves the case by using his deductive and inductive reasoning, his knowledge of human nature, and his disguise skills. He follows the clues, interrogates the suspects, and exposes the lies. He also uses his intuition and his imagination, and sometimes relies on his luck and his courage. He manages to find the Mikado Jewel, and to reveal the identity and the motive of the killer. He also helps the innocent and the wronged, and brings justice and peace to the case.


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