Publishing: While the SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY drew its last gasps, the detective found a new lease of life ... on television! From September of this year through to January 1971, ITV broadcast three seasons of SEXTON BLAKE, fifty episodes in all, only the first of which still exists.
Notes: After three months working abroad to destroy a drugs cartel, Sexton Blake returns to his Berkeley Square office in a foul mood and manages to insult all his staff. Later, while making a TV appearance on a talk show, he demeans the host and storms off the set. His physician, Sir Manfred Peek, recommends a stay in a rest home. Blake is thus booked into Deaver Grange — which is also a private hospital — where he begins a health regime. A few days later, a multi-millionaire Arab Sheikh named Abd-el Muri arrives. Already this oil tycoon has ecaped two assassination attempts and Blake knows that more may come. When Arthur 'Splash' Kirby enters the home in the guise of a patient, Blake reveals to him that his apparent nervous breakdown was simply a ploy to get himself into the home without it seeming as if he is on a mission. In fact, he is acting on instructions from Eustace Craille to protect the sheikh. An attack on Abd-el Muri results in a head injury that has to be operated on. Blake speaks to another of Craille's agents who is posing as the hospital's porter. In mid-conversation, a shot from a hidden gunman hits the porter in the head. Craille learns of the death via Kirby and responds by revealing Blake's mission to Tinker and sending him to help. Detective Chief Inspector George Coutts is also ordered to investigate Deaver Grange. One of the hospital doctors who had operated on the sheikh flees from the crime scene and is killed in a gunfight with Blake. The sheikh leaves the Grange but the detective learns that he is to be ambushed. With the help of the police, the attack is foiled. Abd-el Muri has a meeting with the government that is crucial for the country's oil supplies. Afterward, Craille takes Blake to meet the prime minister who informs them that the Arab had acted out of character and reversed his previous position on oil supplies — a disaster for British interests. Blake, with authorisation, kidnaps the sheikh and hands him over to a brain surgeon who removes a transmitter from the man's skull. Two plots have been foiled one to kill the sheikh, the other to control him. The culprits are identified and justice is served.
Trivia: The author is given as Desmond Reid on the cover but as Peter Saxon inside.