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10Mar/140

EP1203: Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: The Confidential Matter, Parts One and Two

Bob Bailey

Johnny is called in to investigate when it turns out that a dead friend embezzled $80,000 from his insurance company.

Original Air Dates: September 10 and 11, 1956

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9Mar/140

EP1202: Mr. Keen, Tracer of Lost Persons: The Case of Murder and the Star of Death

Mr. Keen investigates a murder that's also tied into the disappearance of a valuable diamond.

Original Air Date: June 9, 1949

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8Mar/140

EP1202: The Line Up: Good Enough to Eat

William Johnstone
Guthrie and Karger look for the source of an outbreak of botulism.

Original Air Date: February 13, 1953

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8Mar/141

Book Review: The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes


"The Case-book of Sherlock Holmes"  is  the very last Sherlock Holmes short story collection, published in 1927. It is a 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 biggest failing of  "The Veiled Lodger"s 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 stories:

"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 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.

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

"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 so many phrases that I'd have just glossed over or imagined what they meant. 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

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7Mar/140

EP1201: Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: The Curse of Kamashek Matter, Part Five and Clue of the Masked Murderer

Bob Bailey
With two wealthy men died, Johnny sets about finding the murderers.

Original Air Date: September 7, 1956

A murderer wears a mask for some reason and then drops off bodies in a building he's anonymously told the police to guard.

Original Air Date: February 12, 1944

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6Mar/140

EP1200: Nick Carter: Murder in a Decanter

Lon Clark
Nick Carter finds himself charged with the murder of a complete stranger.

Original Air Date: December 31, 1944

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5Mar/140

EP1199: Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: The Curse of Kamashek Matter, Parts Three and Four

Bob Bailey

Johnny tries to track down an insured archaeologist before he leaves for Egypt.

Original Air Dates: September 5 and 6, 1956

 

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4Mar/140

EP1198: Casebook of Gregory Hood: Death from The Red Capsule

Gale Gordon
A young woman is poisoned when visiting Gregory Hood's campfire and  Gregory is charged with the crime.

Original Air Date: July 22, 1946

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3Mar/140

EP1197: Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: Curse of Kamashek Matter, Parts One and Two

Bob Bailey

Johnny is called into a family dispute over an archaeological trip to Egypt and a curse.

Original Air Dates: September 3 and 4, 1956

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2Mar/140

EP1196s: Richard Diamond: The Fifty Thousand Dollar Diamond Heist

Dick Powell

Diamond is given a package to deliver to Philadelphia and finds $10,000 in diamonds stolen from the commissioner's house.

Original Air Date: November 12, 1949

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