In 1911, G. K. Chesterton published this first collection of twelve short stories featuring Father Brown, a priest turned detective who combines philosophical and spiritual reasoning with scientific observation to solve crimes. In doing so, Chesterton laid the foundation for future detective figures in literature, such as Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple, Ellery Queen, and Nero Wolfe.
Unlike other writers of his time, who concocted outlandish crimes and intricate puzzles for the protagonist to solve, Chesterton pioneered the cozy mystery, narrowing the scope of the investigation to limited time, limited space, and a limited number of suspects, with all of the clues revealed to the reader as well as to the detective.
Chesterton is highly regarded as a biting social commentator, and his humorous and insightful comparisons leave readers reeling. The tales in this collection are short, easy reads with strong plots, all connected by the clever detective with an above-average understanding of human nature.