The Big Bow Mystery – Israel Zangwill


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“It seems clear that the deceased did not commit suicide. It seems equally clear that the deceased was not murdered…”

Bow is a working-class district in the East End of London. It’s a cold December morning, and a London pea-souper swirls around the dark streets. At 11 Grover Street, a rooming house, Mrs. Drabdump the landlady is unconcerned and goes “about her work quite as cheerlessly as usual”. Then she trudges upstairs to wake one of the lodgers – Arthur Constant is an idealist, and a campaigner for workers’ rights. Not getting a response she tries again but the door is firmly locked from within. She summons her neighbour, the well-known retired detective George Grodman who batters down the door, only to be confronted with a corpse… and the first ever locked door mystery.


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