Stephen D. Frances' This Woman is Death (1948) claims to be a 'fast moving thriller'. Having now read it, that's three lies. This Woman is actually a stodgy political thriller about a well-meaning secret society who recruit our protagonist to do odd jobs for The Greater Good. It is notable primarily because, on the spectrum of secret societies, this is on the "Pro" end of the spectrum. The collusion of powerful millionaires and aristocrats is a good thing - they can do what namby-pamby governments and lawmakers cannot. Their quiet work regulating the world is what keeps us from dissolving into chaos and war. Of course.
This Woman is Death is also spectacularly boring: it spends most of the book with the character (who is mystifyingly worthless) being recruited. As if ashamed by its own premise, the bulk of the dialogue is spent in tepid philosophical banter. When the action does kick off, it is misogynistic and unpleasant. This is presumably an attempt to emphasise the real world horror that results from theoretical decisions, but that may be giving the book too much credit. The result is a book that oscillates from being dull to being mean - and is thoroughly unpalatable and unpleasant at every step of the journey. (Intriguingly, this edition, which seems to be from the 1960s, was published as a "Stephen Frances" novel, and not under Frances' far more popular pseudonym: Hank Janson. Possibly because it doesn't actually feature the character of Janson?)