Last year (2011) I read The case of the lamp that went out by Auguste Groner featuring Austrian detective Joe Muller, a different kind of detective who cares not only about the victim but also the perpetrator. When I found four novelettes featuring Joe Muller in the public domain I downloaded the ebooks.
In 'The Case of the Golden Bullet', Professor Fellner, is found shot dead in a locked room. The autopsy reveals that Fellner was killed with a golden bullet. Muller uses disguise and solves the case. He is compassionate not towards the victim but towards the murderer.
In 'The Case of the Registered Letter', Babette Graumann approaches Joe Muller to save her nephew who had been wrongly arrested for a murder. There is lots of evidence incriminating Albert Graumann. But Muller believes in his innocence, how will he prove Albert's innocence? Muller uses the nature of the accused to show that he could not have committed the crime. This is an interesting story though I don't think quite possible. There is an important message too.
In 'The Case of the pocket Dairy found in snow', a working-man on his way home, finds a package, with instructions to hand it over to the nearest police sation. The package contains a woman's pocket diary that details her kidnap. Will Muller find her and rescue her before it is too late? The rescue forms the story.
In 'The case of the Pool of blood in Pastor's Study', the Pastor's study is filled with a pool of blood, Pastor's body is missing. Joe Muller is called to investigate, he finds strange circular pattern in the room and a lead. What are the circular patters? What happened to the body? He quickly solves the case.
Interesting stories but no twist or surprise. Muller is a detective with a heart rather than a thinking machine. Originally written in German, and translated and compiled in an omnibus in 1910. These ebooks can be found in Gutenberg.