John Dene comes to England with a great invention, and the intention of gingering-up the Admiralty. His directness and unconventional methods bewilder and embarrass the officials at Whitehall, where, according to him, most of the jobs are held by those “whose great-grandfathers had a pleasant way of saying how do you do to a prince.”
Suddenly John Dene disappears, and the whole civilised world is amazed at an offer of £20,000 for news of him. Scotland Yard is disorganised by tons of letters and thousands of callers. Questions are asked in the House, the Government becomes anxious, and only Department Z retains it equanimity.
This book introduced several of Herbert Jenkins’ popular characters to the reading public: John Dene himself; Jenkins’ version of the “great detective,” Malcolm Sage; Dene’s secretary and future wife, Dorothy West, and several members of the future staff of the Malcolm Sage Detective Bureau. Our edition has been carefully edited and annotated, and includes a new Afterword.