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The Decagon House Murders: Yukito Ayatsuji (Pushkin Vertigo)

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But Yokomizo was the one to create a pop culture icon: The Honjin Murders marks the debut of his famous detective, Kosuke Kindaichi, who appeared in another 76 books, as well as numerous film adaptations, manga and anime.

Conan Doyles’s Holmes stories were first translated and serialised in Japan in the 1890s, and quickly found a passionate fanbase.

Once again, this is less a novel than an ingenious card trick transformed into the shape of bound pages printed with text, so enter accordingly and have a ball. I’m not a doctor (uh, obviously) but I’ve discovered a few tips and tricks over the past year of nonstop anxiety.

Christie only wrote a handful – Hercule Poirot’s Christmas and Murder in Mesopotamia being the better-known examples – while almost all Yokomizo books include them. I've been careful not to say too much about the action in "The Decagon House Murders," but let me stress that this book really is a pleasure for anyone who enjoys locked-room mysteries, impossible crimes or Golden Age "Challenges to the Reader. Another Yokomizo novel, The Inugami Curse, has a classic golden age scenario at its heart – a wealthy man leaves a complicated will that results in his heirs dropping like flies as a murderer tries to maximise their inheritance – but also contains rich detail about Japan’s aristocracy, which was dissolving as society modernised.The Decagon House Murders,is a thrilling homage to Christie’sAnd Then There Were None, following a group of amateur sleuths on a trip to a lonely island, the site of several unsolved murders.

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