The Mystery of the Yellow Room

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The Mystery of the Yellow Room  (1908) 
by Gaston Leroux, translated by Anonymous
The Mystery of the Yellow Room: Extraordinary Adventures of Joseph Rouletabille, Reporter (in French Le mystère de la chambre jaune) is one of the first locked room mystery crime fiction novels (such that a murder or other crime is apparently committed under impossible circumstances). It is written by Gaston Leroux, first published in France in the literary supplement of L'illustration from September 1907 to November 1907, then as a one volume book in 1908.

It is the first novel starring fictional detective Joseph Rouletabille.

The story concerns a complex and seemingly impossible crime in which the criminal appears to disappear from a locked room. Such is the mechanical and logistic complexity of the puzzle that Leroux provides the reader with detailed and precise diagrams and floorplans illustrating the scene of the crime. Further impossible problems emerge as the story progresses towards a dramatic denouement. The emphasis of the story is firmly on the intellectual challenge to the reader, who will almost certainly be hard pressed to unravel every detail of the situation.

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THE MYSTERY

OF

THE YELLOW ROOM

page

The Mystery


of


The Yellow Room


Extraordinary Adventures of

Joseph Rouletabille,

Reporter


By

Gaston LeRoux


NEW YORK

GROSSET & DUNLAP

PUBLISHERS

page

Copyright, 1908

By Brentano's




MADE IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

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CONTENTS

CHAPTER PAGE
I In Which We Begin Not to Understand 1
II In Which Joseph Rouletabille Appears for the First Time 13
III "A Man Has Passed Like a Shadow Through the Blinds" 22
IV "In the Bosom of Wild Nature" 35
V In Which Joseph Rouletabille Makes a Remark to Monsieur Robert Darzac Which Produces Its Little Effect 41
VI In the Heart of the Oak Grove 48
VII In Which Rouletabille Sets Out on an Expedition Under the Bed 64
VIII The Examining Magistrate Questions Mademoiselle Stangerson 76
IX Reporter and Detective 85
X "We Shall Have to Eat Red Meat—Now" 96
XI In Which Frederic Larsan Explains How the Murderer Was Able to Get Out of The Yellow Room 106
XII Frederic Larsan's Cane 133
XIII "The Presbytery Has Lost Nothing of Its Charm, Nor the Garden Its Brightness" 140
XIV "I Expect the Assassin This Evening" 156
XV The Trap 165
XVI Strange Phenomenon of the Dissociation of Matter 180
XVII The Inexplicable Gallery 184
XVIII Rouletabille Has Drawn a Circle Between the Two Bumps on His Forehead 194
XIX Rouletabille Invites Me to Breakfast at the Donjon Inn 197
XX An Act of Mademoiselle Stangerson 213
XXI On the Watch 219
XXII The Incredible Body 230
XXIII The Double Scent 235
XXIV Rouletabille Knows the Two Halves of the Murderer 239
XXV Rouletabille Goes on a Journey 249
XXVI In Which Joseph Rouletabille Is Awaited with Impatience 251
XXVII In Which Joseph Rouletabille Appears in All His Glory 261
XXVIII In Which It Is Proved That One Does Not Always Think of Everything 295
XXIX
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This is a translation and has a separate copyright status from the original text. The license for the translation applies to this edition only.
Original:
This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.

The author died in 1927, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 80 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.

 
Translation:
This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923. It may be copyrighted outside the U.S. (see Help:Public domain).