by Jean-Marc Lofficier

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Cover Gallery 1

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German covers by Regino Bernad

Le Saint Detective Magazine 1

Le Saint Detective Magazine 2

Le Saint Detective Magazine 3

Le Saint Detective Magazine 4

About Nero Wolfe & The Toff

About artist
Regino Bernad

The Saint on French Radio

Text Comparisons

De Saint (The Dutch Saint)

© 2001 Jean-Marc Lofficier. This article first appeared in a slightly different form in the Summer '94 issue of The Epistle.

Thanks to Ian Dickerson for Research Assist.
Thanks to Dan Bodenheimer, Marcel Bernadac, and Patrick Verdant for additional cover scans.

The size of the Fayard volumes were standardized at 222 pages. Consequently, the Michel-Tyls had to cut down and edit Charteris' original English prose in order to fit the format, while striving to retain his idiosyncratic charm and flavor. We have randomly selected the first few opening paragraphs of The Beauty Specialist, translated as Le Saint contre Mr. Z (Fayard No. 16), as a sample:




The fact that Simon Templar had never heard of the "Z-Man" was merely a tremendous proof that the Z-Man himself, his victims and the police authorities had joined forces in a monumental conspiracy of silence. For the Saint invariably had a zephyr finger on the pulse of the underworld, and the various forms of fun find frolic that went on in the ranks of the ungodly without his knowledge were so few that for all practical purposes they might have been regarded as nonexistent. Le Saint n'avait jamais entendu parler du mystérieux bandit que l'on appelait «Monsieur Z». The Saint had never heard of the mysterious gangster they called "Mister Z".
He was lunching alone at the Dorchester Grill when the first ripple of new adventure irrigated the dusty dryness of a particularly arid spell. He had been ruminating on the perfidious dullness of the cloudy day when the grillroom was suddenly supplied with its own sunshine. A girl had entered. Il déjeunait seul, ce jour-là, au grill-room de l'hôtel Dorchester, lorsque le silence se fit soudain dans la salle. Une femme venait d'entrer. That day, he was lunching alone in the grill-room of the Dorchester Hotel when silence suddenly fell upon the room. A woman had entered.
She was alone. She was tall and trim waisted and as graceful as a dancer, and the soft waves of her fair golden hair rippled in the gentle stir of air caused by her own motion. Exquisitely dressed, devastatingly sure of herself, she was escorted to a vacant table in a sudden hush of awed admiration that enveloped a world-famous film producer, two visiting bishops, three cosmopolitan millionaires, a music-hall comedian, a couple of ancient marquises and about fifty other minor celebrities, in a simultaneous speechlessness of homage. Elle était seule. Grande, svelte, blonde, elle avait une démarche souple de danseuse. Elégante, sûre de soi, elle se dirigea vers une table vacante, escortée par le silence admiratif des personnalités présentes : un producteur de films américain; deux millionnaires cosmopolites; une vedette de music-hall; une marquise authentique et une cinquantaine d'autres célébrités de moindre importance. She was alone. Tall, svelte, blonde, she had the graceful stride of a dancer. Elegant, self-assured, she walked to a vacant table, escorted by the admiring silence of the present personalities : an American film producer; two cosmopolitan millionaires; a music-hall star; an authentic marquise and about fifty other minor celebrities.
Simon Templar, who had as many human instincts as any of the aforesaid, would have stared at her anyway; but somehow he found himself watching her with even more than that natural curiosity and interest. And a faint tentative tingle went through him as he realized why. For an instant, when he had first raised his eyes and seen her, he had wondered if Patricia Holm had missed an appointment of her own and had come to join him. This girl was surprisingly like Pat; the same height, the same fair grace, the same radiant charm. There was something vaguely familiar about her face too; and now the Saint was no longer reminded, of Pat. He wondered who she was, and he was not the kind of man to be satisfied with wondering. Simon Templar, qui avait au moins autant de goût que n'importe laquelle des personnes sus-nommées, l'avait regardée avec intérêt, mais ce qui le frappait par-dessus tout, c'etait la ressemblance de cette jeune femme avec Patricia Holm. II se demanda qui elle était. Simon Templar, who had at least as much taste as any of the aforesaid personalities, had watched her with interest, but what had struck him above all was the young woman's resemblance with Patricia Holm. He wondered who she was.
"Tell me, Alphonse," he murmured to the waiter who was hovering about him like a ministering angel, "who is the vision in smoke blue at that table over there?" - Dites-moi, Alphonse, murmura-t-il au garçon, qui est la dame en bleu? "Tell me, Alphonse," he murmured to the waiter, "who is the lady in blue?"
The waiter looked across the room. "That, sir," he said, with a certain visible contempt for such ignorance, "is Miss Beatrice Avery." Alphonse regarda le Saint avec un certain mépris.
- C'est Miss Beatrice Avery, dit-il.
Alphonse looked at the Saint with some contempt.
"She," he said, "is Miss Beatrice Avery."
Simon wrinkled his brow. "The name strikes a chord but fails to connect." - Je connais ce nom, dit Templar, fronçant les sourcils. Qu'est-ce qu'elle vend? "I know that name," said Simon, wrinkling his brow. "What does she sell?"
"Miss Avery is a film star, sir." - Miss Avery est une vedette de l'écran, répondit Alphonse sévèrement. "Miss Avery is a film star," replied Alphonse severely.
"So she is. I've seen photographs of her here and there." - C'est cela. J'ai du voir des photographies. "That's right. I must have seen her photographs."
"Her latest picture, Love, the Swindler is the best thing she's done," volunteered the waiter dreamily. "Have you seen it, sir?" - Monsieur l'a-t-il vue dans son dernier film? insista le garçon; L'Amour, ce gredin. Elle est divine. "You may have seen her last picture, Sir?" the waiter insisted. "Love, the Swindler. She is divine."
"Fortunately, no," answered the Saint, glancing with some pain at the waiter's enraptured face, and then averting his own. "Swindlers have never interested me -- much." - Je ne l'ai pas vue, répondit Simon; et je n'aime pas les gredins. "I did not see it," answered Simon; "And I do not like swindlers."