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All are familiar with the well-known plot of the man who commits murder and then attempts to make the crime appear to be suicide. In There’s Always a Price Tag, James Hadley Chase turns this old plot inside out and gives us a new and electrifying reverse of the coin: the man who attempts to make a suicide appear to be murder, in order to lay his hands on the victim’s insurance money. Here is a thriller that will quicken your heart-beats. It is by far the most ingenious story that this “Master of the art of deception” has yet given us.

Keith Devery arrived in the small town of Wicksteed with a criminal record and a lot of ambition. And when he met Frank Marshall. a local drunk who was about to inherit a million dollars, he knew that here was a golden opportunity to get back into the big league. Marshall’s mysterious wife Beth agreed with him... and together they ruthlessly plotted the perfect murder. Then Keith found that he had himself been setup... and that Beth has plans of her own once the money was hers.

In the Crowded, smoky Neptune Tavern Al Barney tells of four ill-assorted people — Don Elliot, ex movie star; Joey Luck and his daughter, Cindy, small time ‘dips’ and Vin Pinna, a vicious gunman — in search of 8 Russian stamps worth a million Dollars.

Out of the past comes a woman Clay Burden had loved and idolized. Believing she was lost to him, he has married. He finds she too has married. To him the situation presents no problem: a double divorce and the problem is solved. It doesn’t work out like that. There are many complications which include hypnotism and murder. Set against the opulent background of Paradise City with hurricane ‘Hermes’ providing a roaring and lethal back-drop, Believe This... You’ll Believe Anything lives up to its title. The magic of James Hadley Chase’s story telling is your guarantee of a non-stop, compulsive read.

When Vic Malloy, head of Universal Services — an organization undertaking any job that a client wants done — is hired to watch a millionaire’s wife suspected of kleptomania, it is just another routine assignment — until an operator working on the case is suddenly and brutally murdered. Then the millionaire’s wife vanishes; and the husband denies he has ever hired Malloy, and threatens to sue him if he goes to the police. Faced with this extraordinary situation, Malloy is determined to avenge the death of his operator and, playing a lone hand, sets out to find the killer. From that moment, he and his two aides, Paula Bensinger and Jack Kerman are involved in a series of ruthless murders and macabre situations. Strange people flit across the scene; any of them could be the killer. There is the ex-prize fighter, Caesar Mills; the millionaire’s crippled daughter, Natalie; the nightclub owner, Bannister; the playboy, George Barclay; the photographer and blackmailer, Louis; the cowboy sharpshooter, Thayler; and the red-haired, green-eyed Gail Bolus, a girl with a past.

Eastlake is the kind of place where ‘nice’ people live — nice, well-off, civilised people. People who know all about each other and where everyone knows everyone else’s business — rather like living in a goldfish bowl. So when scanners are set up in the self-service shop in an attempt to catch petty shoplifters, it comes as rather a surprise when some dark secrets begin to emerge. A perfect opportunity for blackmailers...

Who murdered Lucille Balu, a rising young film star, found strangled to death in a hotel elevator? Set against the background of the fabulous Cote d’Azur and the Cannes Film Festival, James Hadley Chase’s new thriller tells the story of a young degenerate with an inner compulsion to kill. Written with the speed, force and economy of style we have come to expect from the man who has been described as “the most remarkable among British and American thriller writers” this tense new novel throws a noose round the reader which will not be snakes off until long after the last page has been turned.

Victor Dermott, a successful playwright, rent an isolated ranch house in the Nevada Desert where he plans to write another play. With his wife, baby, a Vietnamese servant and a dog, he settles down in the ranch house to work. For the first two months all is ideal, then one bright summer morning, Dermott wakes to find his servant, his dog, and his shot guns have vanished. He also discovers that the telephone is dead and that someone has removed the sparking plugs from his car. This is the terrifying opening sequence of the masterly new James Hadley Chase novel, a worthy success to a long line of best-sellers.

Genre: Prose

In the year that the Second World War broke out, James Hadley Chase (1906-85) published his crime novel, No Orchids For Miss Blandish (1939), which subsequently became one of the best-selling mysteries of all time. “The Mirror in Room 22” is quite unlike anything else from James Hadley Chase’s pen — a ghost story that he wrote while serving as a pilot in the RAF.

Ira Marsh, a provocative blond teenager, arrives at Paradise City, Florida’s crime-free, millionaires’ playground. Her arrival sparks off a cunningly devised plan to rob the Florida Safe Deposit bank, an impregnable fortress, acclaimed as the safest bank in the world. Ticky Edris, an anti-social, misshapen dwarf, directs the operation while Phil Algir, the handsome con-man aids and abets. The plan moves smoothly into action by the ruthless murders of a drug-taking call-girl, her pimp and the short-sighted teenage daughter of the Vice-President of the bank. Here is an absorbing thriller, written with a hard, swift economy of style. The Way the Cookie Crumbles hooks the reader, and keeps him hooked to the end.

Here is a story that zips along at a breakneck speed and again points to the reason why James Hadley Chase has gained such a world-wide reputation for explosive and non-stop action. To Floyd Jackson, private investigator and blackmailer, comes Cornelius Gorman with an odd proposition. Gorman looks after the interests of a number of big stars. Veda Rux, known in the profession as a stripper. The previous night, Gorman explains, she performed at a dinner given by millionaire Lindsay Brett, who has recently acquired a priceless dagger, reputed to be made by Cellini. The dagger is shown to the guests and then locked in the safe. Veda Rux is a somnambulist and takes the dagger from the safe in her sleep, only discovering what she has done when she has left the millionaire's house. Gorman wants Jackson to return the dagger to the safe before the theft is discovered. Jackson, however, is sure the story is a tissue of lies. He was too smart for Gorman, when he fell in love with Veda his doom was sealed. From the moment he agrees to return the dagger, he is caught up in a relentless intrigue that makes him a cats paw for murder.

James Hadley Chase has given us then and now Each novel, complete in itself, follows the sexually frustrated life of Helga Rolfe, one of the richest of women, shrewd and ruthless, with a penchant for men. In Helga finds, at long last, the man she wants to marry, but, as we have come to expect from the ‘thriller maestro of the generation’, unexpected and dangerous complications arise. As the has called him, this ‘master of the art of deception’ once again has written a tense, fast-moving story that will keep you up long past your now a major movie with Karen Black playing Helga and Omar Sharif playing Archer.

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