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28Feb/140

EP1195: Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: The Kranesburg Matter, Part Four and Five

Bob Bailey

With Smiley Prell dead, Johnny has to look elsewhere in the case of $50,000 in missing jewels.

Original Air Date: August 30 and 31, 1956

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27Feb/140

EP1194: Nick Carter: Murder Goes to College

Lon Clark
Nick Carter investigates the death of a college student at a all-woman college that was classed as suicide. Nick quickly discovers its murder and sets out to find the killer.

Original Air Date: December 24, 1944

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26Feb/140

EP1193: Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: The Kranesburg Matter, Parts Two and Three

Bob Bailey

With the jewel thief getting nervous, Johnny investigates the mysterious Krane Family.

Original Air Dates: August 28 and 29, 1956

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25Feb/140

EP1192: Casebook of Gregory Hood: South of the Border

Gale Gordon

Gregory Hood arrives in Mexico City to purchase jade and is mistaken for a wayward king.

Original Air Date: July 15, 1946

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24Feb/140

EP1191: Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: The Kranesburg Matter, Parts 1 and 1A

Bob Bailey

Johnny goes to make a deal with a jewel thief who has stolen from a family with old money.

Original Air Dates: August 24 and 27, 1956

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24Feb/140

Book Review: The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes

This book is the proverbial mixed bag. There are some stories in the book that are essential reading for Holmes fans (The Problem at Thor Bridge and the Sussex Vampire), and then there are some of the weakest stories in the Canon (The Lion's Mane, the Blanched Soldier, and the Veiled Lodger), and then others that range between average to fairly good.

"The Problem at Thor Bridge" is simply one of Holmes best cases. There's so much in the story and the solution is classic. The same thing goes for the Sussex Vampire which presents Holmes a problem that's evocative of the supernatural but with a surprising natural solution that is pretty emotional in its own right.

Most of the worst stories came towards the end of the book. Both "The Blanched Soldier" and "The Lion's Mane"  were attempts to tell Holmes' adventures from Holmes own perspective. While "The Blanched Soldier" was slightly better of the two, both stories were somewhat dry and uninteresting tales that it was hard to care about. "The Veiled Lodgers" biggest failing is that Holmes really does nothing. He describes a mystery and then has one of the perpetrators tell him what happened. While Holmes did say something very wise in response to that, it wasn't really a detective story.

Looking at the rest of the series:

"The Mazarin Stone": Told in third person, I actually thought it was a pretty fun story showing Holmes cleverness. It was a similar story to the Dying Detective, but I liked this story better.

"The Creeping Man": This is a bizarre story and I know some people really don't like it because it's almost into the realm of speculative fiction, but I thought it was carried off fine and is a classic mix of horror and the detective genre, though good luck trying to guess as to what's happening.

"The Three Garidebs": This is once again a story that calls to mind previous adventures. In it, a man with an unusual last name stands to make a fortune just for having his last name, but he brings in Holmes to discern the truth of the business. This story is not as good as "The Red Headed League" but is actually better than "The Stockbroker's Clerk."

"The Illustrious Client": This isn't a whodunit but a challenge for Holmes to stop the marriage of a naive woman to a scoundrel. This is a very well-executed story where Holmes is put to the test against a clever adversary who is a master at manipulating the sympathy of women.

"The Three Gables": This story of a bereaved mother receiving mysterious offers to buy her house is a very good and enjoyable story with a satisfying solution.

"The Retired Colourman": This is actually a pretty enjoyable story though Holmes doesn't seem as warm towards Watson in a few places. The solution is a good change of pace, if perhaps a bit melodramatic.

"Shoscombe Old Place": The last Holmes story by Doyle and its solid. Its clearly not at the high quality of Doyle's prime but Holmes gets a pretty engaging case with a clever and unexpected solution revolving around a race horse and the odd behavior of the lady of the manor.

Overall, this is a must for mystery fans even if Doyle is clearly past his prime as a writer in this one.

Let me add that this Oxford edition I read really was splendid and added to the reading experience. The explanatory notes section was helpful to me reading this as an American in the 21st century, as it gave meaning to so many phrases that I'd have just glossed over or imagined what they meant otherwise. There's also a copious amount of introductory information that provides some great background on the book and is a great resource if you can get a hold of it.

Rating 4.0 out of 5.0

23Feb/140

EP1190s: Rocky Jordan: Man from Damascus

Jack Moyles

Rocky receives money and a command to appear from a mysterious bandaged man from Damascus.

Original Air Date: June 12, 1949

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22Feb/140

EP1190: The Line Up: Cowardly Castro

William Johnstone

Two crooks from Indiana move to town and a business is held up and it was employed by another man from Indiana who was in prison with the two thugs.

Rehearsal of Program that Aired January 2, 1953

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21Feb/140

EP1189: Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: The Crystal Lake Matter, Part Five and Manhunt: The Clue of the Red Thread

Bob Bailey
With the cab driver dead, Johnny's best lead is gone. Will he discovered who killed Russell?

Original Air Date: August 17, 1956

Andrew Stephens investigates a case where a gangster has made a murder look like an accident.

Original Air Date: January 8, 1944

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20Feb/140

EP1188: Nick Carter: Death Plays the Lead

Lon Clark

Nick Carter investigates the violent death of an actress backstage at a show for soldiers.

Original Air Date: December 3, 1944

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