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At the Villa Rose 
by A.E.W. Mason (1865-1948) 

Harry Wethermiill, brilliant scientist, graduate of Oxford and 
Munich, has made a fortune from his inventions and is taking 
a vacation at Aix-les-Bains. There he falls in love with the 
beautiful Celia Harland, who serves as companion to the 
aging, warm-hearted Madam Dauvray. All this is observed by 
Julius Ricardo, a retired financier from London who spends 
every August at Aix, expecting there to find a pleasant and 
peaceful life. Imagine his consternation when he learns that 

Mme. Dauvray has been brutally murdered, and imagine Harry 
AEW Mason Wethermill's consternation when he learns that every finger of 
suspicion is pointed at the now vanished Celia Harland. 

Wethermill implores Ricardo to ask his friend Inspector Hanaud, the great 
detective of the Paris Sûreté (who is also vacationing in Aix) to involve himself 
in the case so that the truth may come out. Hanaud agrees to do so and goes 
to work. Will he be up to the job? And will Harry Wethermill ultimately be glad 
that he called in the great man? Surely Hanaud will exercise his powerful little 
grey cells — one of several characteristics he shares with a famous Belgian 
detective of later decades, and indeed some scholars of mystery suggest that 
Agatha Christie, in her invention of Hercule Poirot, owes a debt to Mason. 


A.E.W. Mason 

Total running time: 7:22:17 Cover design by Kathryn Delaney 
Read by Nicholas Clifford Photograph by Daderot