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Includes The Murders in the Rue Morgue, The Mystery of Marie Rogêt, and The Purloined Letter
Between 1841 and 1844, Edgar Allan Poe invented the genre of detective fiction with three mesmerizing stories of a young French eccentric named C. Auguste Dupin. Introducing to literature the concept of applying reason to solving crime, these tales brought Poe fame and fortune to live on. Years later, Dorothy Sayers would describe “The Murders in the Rue Morgue” as “almost a complete manual of detective theory and practice.” Indeed, Poe’s short mysteries inspired the creation of countless literary sleuths, among them Sherlock Holmes. Today, the Dupin stories still stand out as unique, utterly engrossing page-turners.
This Modern Library edition reproduces the definitive texts of the three tales. It includes an enlightening Introduction by novelist Matthew Pearl and an Appendix, “The Earliest Detectives.”
Praise for The Murders in the Rue Morgue:
“The modern detective story starts here, and Matthew Pearl's introduction offers us new ways of thinking about the Dupin tales' place in nineteenth-century culture as well as their lasting literary value.”
-- Scott Peeples, Department of English, College of Charleston, and President of the Poe Studies Association
“What a gift–Poe’s Dupin tales introduced and edited by the most sophisticated writer of literary mysteries today! Pearl’s decision to reprint these three luminous stories as a sequence is revelatory: this, indeed, is the second novel Poe never published, with an unforgettable protagonist whose obsession with questions of truth and authenticity becomes our own. Poe’s elusive detective is our contemporary.”
-- Christoph Irmscher, Professor of English, University of Maryland Baltimore County, author of Longfellow Redux
“As is clear from Matthew Pearl’s introduction to this collection, any study of the detective story genre must begin with the Dupin trilogy contained in The Murders in the Rue Morgue: The Dupin Tales. Not only will readers find the unfolding mysteries in these stories intriguing in themselves, they will likely also develop theories of their own about Poe’s role in the evolution of the detective story based on rich materials included in the volume’s appendix....For students and first-time readers of Poe, this little volume is an Aladdin’s cave; for those who are already Poe devotees it is a fitting tribute to his genius in the form of what Pearl aptly calls a 'self-contained novella.'”
— Bryant Mangum, Professor of English, Virginia Commonwealth University