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Mr Bazalgette's Agent (1888)
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CRIME & MYSTERY. When Miriam Lea falls on hard times, an advertisement calling for private agents catches her eye, and within weeks she finds herself in Mr Bazalgette's employ as a private detective, travelling on a train to Hamburg in pursuit of an audacious fraudster. What follows is a journey through some of the great cities of Europe - and eventually to South Africa - as Miss Lea attempts to find her man. Miriam Lea is only the third ever British professional female detective to appear in a work of crime fiction. Originally published in 1888, Mr Bazalgette's Agent presents a determined and resourceful heroine in the figure of Miss Lea, who grapples with some very modern dilemmas of female virtue and vice. Leonard Merrick said of the book, his first: 'It's a terrible book. It's the worst thing I ever wrote. I bought them all up and destroyed them. You can't find any.
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