Cain's Jawbone Literary Puzzle

Code: 9781800180796


1 In stock

A paperback edition of the world's most difficult literary puzzle...Read more

The infamously difficult puzzle in a pocket-sized paperback.

If James Joyce and Agatha Christie had a literary lovechild, this would be it.  Daily Telegraph 

A unique hybrid of word puzzle and whodunnit.  Literary Review

Cain’s Jawbone is a 100 page whodunnit in which six people die. To find out who killed them, the reader must re-order the book’s pages. There is only one correct solution. To date, only three people have ever found it.

The story so far…

In 1934, The Observer’s crossword writer, Edward Powys Mathers, wrote a unique novel Cain’s Jawbone, published by GollanczThe title, referring to the first recorded murder weapon, was written under his pen name Torquemada. The story was not only a murder mystery but one of the hardest and most beguiling word puzzles ever published and was only solved by two puzzlers whose names were later revealed in The Observer - but the solution to the problem remained a secret.

In 2017, the Laurence Sterne Trust (who after many months of research and good fortune had managed to unlock the secret of Cain’s Jawbone) partnered with Unbound to revive Torquemada’s challenge and Cain’s Jawbone was reissued as a box of 100 cards. A prize of £1,000 was offered, with a closing date of 19th September 2020. Astonishingly, there was a correct entry and the comedy writer and puzzle fiend John Finnemore claimed the prize.

The paperback

The interest in the puzzle continues to build so Unbound and The Laurence Sterne Trust have decided to keep the solution secret and re-release Cain’s Jawbone in book form.

  • Room for notes at the bottom of each page
  • Printed 'cut here' lines for those who want to remove pages