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About the Author: Freeman Wills Crofts

Born in Dublin of English stock, Freeman Wills Crofts was educated at Methodist and Campbell Colleges in Belfast and at age 17 he became a civil engineering pupil, apprenticed to his uncle, Berkeley D Wise who was the chief engineer of the Belfast and Northern Counties Railway (BNCR).

In 1899 he became a fully fledged railway engineer before becoming a district engineer and then chief assistant engineer for the BNCR.

He married in 1912, Mary Bellas Canning, a bank manager's daughter. His writing career began when he was recovering from a serious illness and his efforts were rewarded when his first novel 'The Cask' was accepted for publication by a London publishing house. Within two decades the book had sold 100,000 copies. Thereafter he continued to write in his spare time and produced a book a year through to 1929 when he was obliged to stop working through poor health.

When he and his wife moved to Guildford, England, he took up writing full time and not surprisingly many of his plots revolved around travel and transport, particularly transport timetables and many of them had a Guildford setting.

In retirement from engineering, as well as writing, he also pursued his other interests, music, in which he was an organist and conductor, gardening, carpentry and travel.

He wrote a mystery novel almost every year until his death and in addition he produced about 50 short stories, 30 radio plays for the BBC, a number of true crime works, a play, 'Sudden Death', a juvenile mystery, 'Young Robin Brand, Detective', and a religious work, 'The Four Gospels in One Story'.

His best known character is Inspector Joseph French, who featured in 30 detective novels between 1924 and 1957. And Raymond Chandler praised his plots, calling him "the soundest builder of them all".

Gerry Wolstenholme
May 2010

Other books by Freeman Wills Crofts

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Goodreads rating: 3.04

Hardcover, Published in Aug 2008 by BiblioLife

ISBN10: 0554217155 | ISBN13: 9780554217154

Page count: 260

This is a pre-1923 historical reproduction that was curated for quality. Quality assurance was conducted on each of these books in an attempt to remove books with imperfections introduced by the digitization process. Though we have made best efforts - the books may have occasional errors that do not impede the reading experience. We believe this work is culturally important and have elected to bring the book back into print as part of our continuing commitment to the preservation of printed works worldwide.

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