Edmund Crispin

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Edmund Crispin was the pseudonym of Robert Bruce Montgomery (2 October 1921 — 15 September 1978), an English crime writer and composer. Montgomery wrote nine detective novels and two collections of short stories under the pseudonym Edmund Crispin (taken from a character in Michael Innes’s Hamlet, Revenge!). The stories feature Oxford don Gervase Fen,  who is a Professor of English at the University and a fellow of St Christopher’s College, a fictional institution that Crispin locates next to St John’s College. The whodunit novels have complex plots and fantastic, somewhat unbelievable solutions, including examples of the locked room mystery. They are written in a humorous, literary and sometimes farcical style and they are also among the few mystery novels to break the fourth wall occasionally and speak directly to the audience.

Crispin is considered by many to be one of the last great exponents of the ‘classic’ crime mystery.

“Crime fiction at its quirkiest and best.” The Guardian Bookshop

“One of the undiscovered treasures of British crime fiction: Crispin’s storytelling is intelligent, humane, surprising and rattling good fun”  A.L. Kennedy


The Case of the Gilded Fly (1944)
Holy Disorders (1945)
The Moving Toyshop (1946) was dedicated to Crispin’s great friend and fellow admirer of the work of John Dickson Carr, Philip Larkin.
Swan Song (1947)
Love Lies Bleeding (1948)
Buried for Pleasure (1949)
Frequent Hearses (1950)
The Long Divorce (1951)
Beware of the Trains (1953) (short story collection)
The Glimpses of the Moon (1977)
Fen Country (1979) (short story collection, published posthumously)

Titles from Edmund Crispin