The Father Brown stories penned in the early 1900s by British critic-novelist-philosopher G.K. Chesterton still rank among the best examples of the detective fiction genre.
With his round face, pipe and umbrella, the shambling priest Father Brown is an unlikely detectiveyet his innocent air hides a razor-sharp understanding of the criminal mind.
When G.K. Chesterton first published his first Father Brown mystery, readers must have been shocked to see a simple country priest emerge as the hero, and a literary star was born.
As this newest volume of his adventures shows, the worldly-wise sleuth has an uncanny ability to bring even the most elusive wrongdoer to justice.
Intellectually Chesterton was as nimble as a hummingbird. His writing became famous for its use of paradox: little controlled explosions that ranged from everyday clichés ("travel narrows the mind") to the perils of the suffragette movement: "Ten thousand women marched through the streets of London saying: `We will not be dictated to', and then went off to become stenographers."
Everything about Chesterton was larger than life: his height, his bulk, and a list of publications long enough to stock a small library.
In a career spanning four decades, he produced some 80 books, 200 short stories, 4,000 essays and countless newspaper columns that he dictated while chuckling at his own jokes and jabbing at the air with a knife.
A "man of colossal genius", according to G B Shaw, he sometimes seemed to have several other writers nested inside him, like Russian dolls.
G.K. CHESTERTON (1874-1936) was an English writer, philosopher, dramatist, journalist, biographer, and art critic. Today he is best known for his fictional priest-detective, Father Brown. Ernest Hemingway, Graham Greene, Evelyn Waugh, Jorge Luis Borges, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Karel Capek, Marshall McLuhan, Paul Claudel, Dorothy L. Sayers, Agatha Christie, Sigrid Undset, Ronald Knox, Kingsley Amis, W.H. Auden, Anthony Burgess, E.F. Schumacher, Neil Gaiman, and Orson Welles among others have praised his writing.