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The Best of the "Saint": v. 1 [Paperback]

Leslie Charteris
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

11 Dec 2008

'I am the Saint - you may have heard of me. Just a twentieth-century privateer. In my small way I try to put right a few of the things that are wrong with this cock-eyed world' Simon Templar, aka the Saint.

On the side of the law and yet outside it, the Saint, exciting, debonair and very slightly disreputable, lives for adventure. Here he is at his ebullient best, spreading terror among London's drug dealers, rescuing a lady crook from distress and much, much more.

Introduced by Ken Follett, this sparkling collection of the very best of the earlier stories includes The Lawless Lady and The Elusive Ellshaw.



Product details

  • Paperback: 800 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder Paperbacks (11 Dec 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 034096362X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340963623
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 405,487 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description

Book Description

A selection of the very best of the Saint stories from the early years, introduced by Ken Follett.

About the Author

Leslie Charteris was born in Singapore and moved to England in 1919. He left Cambridge University early when his first novel was accepted for publication. He wrote novels about the Saint throughout his life becoming, alongside Agatha Christie and Ian Fleming, one of the 20th century's most prolific and popular authors.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
44 of 45 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 35-year pot-pourri 18 Dec 2008
By Paul Magnussen TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
As is usually the case with "Best of" compilations, this two-volume anthology should more properly be called "A Representative Selection of"; although I'm glad to see that none of the inferior wartime Saint stories is included, and that this set does also at least contain genuine Charteris stories, and not the later pot-boilers written by ghost-writers under Charteris's name.

It's always seemed to me that if you like the Saint stories enough to read more than a couple of them, it's worth starting at the beginning and reading them in the right order (as described in my Listmania list). Otherwise, you miss so much: to take just one example, the references in "The Simon Templar Foundation" to Rayt Marius (villain of The Last Hero and Knight Templar) will be meaningless to you.

However, if anthologies such as this are more to your taste, then I would say that the stories in Vol. 1 (which are earlier) are generally better than those in Vol. 2 (with the notable exception of "The Golden Journey" in the latter).

Here's what you get in Vol. 1:

The entirety of Nº 02 Enter the Saint (1930)
• The Man Who Was Clever
• The Policeman with Wings
• The Lawless Lady
From Nº 08 The Holy Terror (1932)
• The Inland Revenue
From Nº 12
... Read more ›
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Saint is as fresh as ever 2 May 2009
Format:Paperback
My introduction to The Saint was many years ago, when 'The Brighter Buccaneer' was given to me as an 11th birthday present by my father. I became an avid fan, and must have read most of the Saint books over a period of years.
This anthology 'The Best of The Saint' took me right back to my first experience of the stories, witty, funny, with a good dollop of fantasy thrown in.
Despite most of these stories now being over 60 years old, they remain as fresh now, as they did when I first read them.
If you haven't read any Saint stories, this is an excellent introduction.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars +The Best of the Saint 27 Sep 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The title of the book reveals its content, it is simply The Best. It all takes me back many years and I'm enjoying it as much as I ever did in those long ago days when Saint books were readily available and almost everyone read them. Well done for stocking it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 3 July 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I love short stories ... especially thrillers ... I had seen The Saint on TV and decided to give the books a try ... fantastic stories ... Recommended
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 35-year pot-pourri 18 Dec 2008
By Paul Magnussen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
As is usually the case with "Best of" compilations, this two-volume anthology should more properly be called "A Representative Selection of"; although I'm glad to see that none of the inferior wartime Saint stories is included, and that this set does also at least contain genuine Charteris stories, and not the later pot-boilers written by ghost-writers under Charteris's name.

It's always seemed to me that if you like the Saint stories enough to read more than a couple of them, it's worth starting at the beginning and reading them in the right order (as described in my So You'd Like To... Guide). Otherwise, you miss so much: to take just one example, the references in "The Simon Templar Foundation" to Rayt Marius (villain of The Last Hero and Knight Templar) will be meaningless to you.

However, if anthologies such as this are more to your taste, then I would say that the stories in Vol. 1 (which are earlier) are generally better than those in Vol. 2 (with the notable exception of "The Golden Journey" in the latter).

Here's what you get in Vol. 1:

The entirety of #02 Enter the Saint (1930)
• The Man Who Was Clever
• The Policeman with Wings
• The Lawless Lady
From #08 The Holy Terror (1932)
• The Inland Revenue
From #12 The Misfortunes of Mr. Teal (1934)
• The Art of Alibi
• The Simon Templar Foundation
From #14 The Saint Goes on (1934)
• The High Fence
• The Elusive Ellshaw
From #21 The Happy Highwayman (1939)
• The Charitable Countess
• The Star Producers
From #20 Follow the Saint (1939)
• The Miracle Tea Party
• The Affair of Hogsbotham

Ken Follett's brief Foreword is to the point, and shows that he has at least read the books; which is more than Sir Roger Moore's (to Volume 2) does.
5.0 out of 5 stars but this is a very good, effective 14 July 2014
By H. Smedbol - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is the first volume of a collection of Saint Stories taken from a lifetime's work of stories by Leslie Charteris...they have all appeared elsewhere, but this is a very good, effective, and cheaper way to read them all in one volume. along with volume 2, this is a very good collection of the timeless stories, which are so fascinatingly and humorously written, that once reading a story, it becomes extremely hard to put the book down, until the story is done...i cannot recommend these stories highly enough.
4.0 out of 5 stars great read 10 Dec 2012
By V. J. Verdolini - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
It was better than expected. I would buy vol 2 if I could find it for less than the $60 listed on this site...
3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great new Charteris collection of The Saint 11 Dec 2008
By D. Bodenheimer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Leslie Charteris started writing about The Saint 80 years ago, and his long-time British publisher, Hodder & Stoughton, has come out with this great 2-volume set of stories to commemorate that achievement. There has been a long drought of new titles and collections, and I'm really pleased to see this great starter kit for anyone interested in learning more about the modern day Robin Hood: Simon Templar, alias The Saint!
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