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Leslie Charteris

The Saint and the People Importers

Hodder & Stoughton 1971
Jacket design Studio Stead

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Leslie Charteris - The Saint and the People Importers

Leslie Charteris

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This is another of those Joint efforts which I initiated with The Saint on TV, and which were accepted well enough to be followed by three other titles of similarly mixed parentage.

In this case, however, there are a few small differences. I first suggested the basic theme to Fleming Lee, who wanted to try his hand at a TV script. He worked out a synopsis, on which I made some suggestions, and which I passed on to the TV producers with my approval. Typically, this was not good enough for them: they bought his synopsis, but would not let him work on the script, and turned it over to another writer, eventually ending up with a script in which our original elements were barely recognisable.

Later, I suggested to Fleming that he should draft this book version, but revert to our original outline, ignoring the Television "improvements". Which he did, at the same tune incorporating some slight changes of my own. Finally, as with all the preceding experiments of this kind^ I personally revised the whole manuscript, doing my best to see that the style conformed as closely as possible to my own. Once again, then, this should not be classed as a "ghosted" job, since I give full credit to my assistant. But since I have also had my own hand in it from start to finish, I don't think it is being offered to Saint fans under false pretences.

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