This Christmas time,
Things are not all fine.
For there's trouble at Devlin's Department Store,
And it all seems to centre on the first floor.
Where strangely, one can hear a cuckoo chime...
T'is the season to be jolly.
And Old Tom must crack the case, before he can hang up his holly.
Researching an article, a puzzling pocket watch comes into Trench's possesion.
Why does the pocket watch stop and then mysteriously reset itself?
Why does the current owner of the timepiece leave cryptic messages in the Stokeham Herald?
And what is the priceless secret behind all the ticking?
Old Tom and Trench slowly begin to realise that the pocket watch is trying to tell them more than just the time...
"The phantom of the theatre?"
Old Tom discovers an old haunt of his, the Regency Theatre in London, is apparently being haunted.
A trip to the capital is in order. Trench is reunited with Sally-Anne - could she be a rival to Debsy?
Dramatic questions then seek the limelight:
What are the strange noises that plague the old theatre?
Where are the mumbled conversations coming from?
Is the star actress really being watched?
And what is the sinister significance of the trapdoor?
Old Tom starts to suspect that the answers may lie 'Underground'...
"A warning from Mandrake?"
The Stokeham Herald is threatened with closure from a 'mystery buyer'. Trench has a deadline of only days to discover the truth.
Is it a coincidence that former acquaintance, Sade Thorn now fronts Castle Holdings?
Is the head of the other Stokeham leasing company colluding with her?
And what is the real reason Mandrake apparently wants to help?
Can Trench ally himself with Old Tom's nemesis, even if it is to save the Herald?
The Armchair Detective At Christmas
The Back Cover descriptions in full:
The Armchair Detective and the Peculiar Pocket Watch
The Armchair Detective In London
The Armchair Detective and the Mystery of Mandrake