Sexton Blake Bibliography: 1939

Publishing: Author Arthur S. Hardy (real name Arthur Steffens) dies, aged 66. G. H. Teed also dies, aged 53.

A Sexton Blake story was published in the final issue of SPORTS BUDGET this year (issue 241). It was written by Charles Malcolm. I have no other details at present. Also this year, KNOCK-OUT COMIC appears, carrying a Sexton Blake strip entitled SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER.

THEY CAME TO SPY
by John Brearley (John Garbutt)

THE BOYS' FRIEND LIBRARY · Issue 655 · 5/1/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Legion of the Brave (article)

Notes: This is a reprint of a serial that appeared in PILOT from issue 99 to 108 (1937).

Unrated


THE FLAMING FRONTIER
by John Brearley (John Garbutt)

THE BOYS' FRIEND LIBRARY · Issue 671 · 4/5/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Trickster's Cunning (article)

Notes: This is a reprint of a serial that appeared in PILOT from issue 118 to 129 (1938). It was also reprinted in the NEW ZEALAND CHUMS ANNUAL (date unknown).

Unrated


THE STATIONMASTER'S SECRET
by John Andrews (H. A. Hinton)

THE BOYS' FRIEND LIBRARY · Issue 687 · 7/9/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Pirates of the Seven Seas (article)

Notes: This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 1st series issue 70 THE STATIONMASTER'S SECRET (1919).

Unrated


THE MYSTERY OF THE DOPE DEN
by John Andrews (H. A. Hinton)

THE BOYS' FRIEND LIBRARY · Issue 691 · 5/10/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Pirates of the Seven Seas (article)

Notes: This tale might come as a surprise to modern readers as it deals with a subject more commonly encountered in the New Order Sexton Blake Library: drug addiction. Sexton Blake helps to set up a drug rehabilitation clinic and among the addicts he sends there is a young woman named Edna Waine. She tells him that there is a mastermind behind the recent increase in drug dealing; a man known only as Mr Swazi. Blake's investigations reveal that a tea shop is a cover for a major opium den run by Israel Salman and an American, Luke O. Travers. Disguised as an addict, Tinker gains access to the den and finds there Glory Gale. She reveals that her newspaper is doing a big story about the drugs trade and she is there to collect information. Unfortunately, she and Tinker are overheard by a Chinaman, Looey Wu, who informs Salman and Travers that the den has been infiltrated. The villains capture the young couple and call Markham Dean and Sexton Blake to warn them that unless they cease their investigations Gale and Tinker will be killed. Blake responds by allowing himself to also be captured while secretly laying a trail for Pedro. In the hands of Detective-Inspector Martin, the bloodhound follows his master's trail to the secret den and, just as Blake and Tinker are being gassed, Martin and the police come to the rescue. Salman and Travers escape and hire a thug to kill Blake. However, the detective overpowers his assailant and forces him to talk. He identifies 'Mr Swazi' as Harvey Dacre, a man who had previously asked Sexton Blake to find his lost daughter. When Blake realises that the girl in question is Edna Waine, he takes Dacre to see her. Filled with remorse, the drugs baron agrees to expose the whole trade. Travers learns of this and murders Dacre before then falling into a trap set by Blake. In the ensuing struggle, Salman is shot dead and Travers is captured (later to be sentenced to death). A statement left by Dacre allows Blake to finally smash the drugs ring.

Trivia: This is a reworking of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 1st series issue 71 THE HIDDEN MENACE (1919) by John W. Bobin. The review is based on a reading of that issue. It was also rewritten by Donald Stuart as THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 690, using the original title, THE HIDDEN MENACE. That issue and this were both published in October this year.

Rating: ★★★★★


THE SECRET OF THE MISSING CONVICT
by John Andrews (H. A. Hinton)

THE BOYS' FRIEND LIBRARY · Issue 698 · 7/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Policing the Great North-West (article)

Notes: While returning from the Russian front with a bullet wound in his side, the Hon. John Lawless rescues the governor of Leyford prison from two escaped convicts as they attack him and his daughter on a train. Lawless makes off before he can be thanked and visits Sexton Blake, who, seeing the condition of his friend, insists that Lawless should rest up. The detective lends him his country cottage in Dorset, which by coincidence is close to Leyford. In that town, Professor Kew and Count Ivor Carlac are plotting to break a prisoner named Melvale out of the prison. He is an ex-bank manager who stole a hoard of jewels from one of his clients. The stash was never found, but Melvale has made a deal with the two master-crooks — if they get him free, he'll take them to where the money is hidden. Kew and Carlac fool Lawless (who has never met them before) into believing that Melvale is an innocent man, and he rashly agrees to help with their scheme. Impersonating a guard, he liberates the banker only to then find himself knocked unconscious. When he recovers, he's wearing prison garb. Mistaken for the convict, he tries to get away but falls into thorn bushes that scratch his face. He is taken to the prison hospital where, in Melvale's cap, he finds a map of the Norfolk Broads, with a particular island marked. Kew, Carlac and Melvale have escaped to Norfolk where they are keeping an eye on the escapee's wife, who they believe to be in possession of a copy of the map, which shows where Melvale buried the money — he can't remember the location without the map. They find it difficult to approach her, though, because Tinker is also watching. The prison governor and his daughter encounter Sam, who is looking for his employer, Lawless. When Lawless passes by in a chain gang, Sam exposes his true identity. Lawless tells his story to the governor and is told to team up with Sexton Blake and catch Melvale within three days. Upon learning that Blake and Lawless are on their way to Norfolk via train, Kew and Carlac switch the points on the track to cause a head on collision. Tinker, on a bridge, sees the two locomotives heading for each other and jumps into the coal tender of one, giving a warning blast on its whistle, bringing it to a halt, and saving the day. Blake and Lawless pursue the criminals into the Norfolk Broads but, after a pitched fight, Kew, Carlac and Melvale get away. They make it to the island and retrieve the jewels. Blake follows but the crooks set the reeds on fire and he only just escapes. The villainous trio start to make their escape in a powered canoe but Melvale betrays Carlac and Kew by pitching them overboard. Lawless and Blake give chase in a motorboat but are stopped by the river police who inform them that the channel ahead is mined. Melvale is blown up and the jewels are recovered. The fate of Carlac and Kew remains a mystery.

Trivia: This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 1st series issue 29 THE CAT'S PAW (1917). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★★


THE ISLAND OF LOST MEN
by G. H. Teed

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 308 · 14/1/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received (ed.); The Round Table (ed.); Saved 18 Minutes Before the Chair by L. C. Mansfield; The Antlered Man by Edwy Searles Brooks

Notes: This is a reprint of SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 293 THE HOUSE OF CURTAINS (1931).

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE VERSUS THE HOUSE OF CYNOS
by Anon. (Robert Murray Graydon)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 310 · 28/1/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received (ed.); The Round Table (ed.); He Saw the Killing... 3 Years After it Happened! by L. C. Mansfield; The Antlered Man by Edwy Searles Brooks.

Notes: Paul Cynos — Convict No. 1843 — correctly predicts that the new Home Secretary will release him from Parkmoor Prison on 23rd March, some nine months before the end of his sentence. Insisting that the sixteen years he has served were for a murder he didn't commit, Cynos vows revenge against all those who were involved in his conviction, particularly his former business partner, Jabez Knowland. Upon gaining his liberty, he is driven by his chauffeur to London and, on the way, gives a lift to Sexton Blake and Tinker, who are stranded after the Grey Panther broke down. Subsequently, Blake becomes interested in Cynos, especially as he himself had testified against him at the trial sixteen years ago. When Knowland calls Blake and asks him for protection, the detective learns that Cynos has been sending a postcard to his one-time partner on the 23rd of March every year, demanding payment for each year of lost freedom. The final card arrives while Blake is there, and it demands 'Payment in full!'. However, the detective takes a dislike to his prospective client, suspecting that he may have framed Cynos, and refuses to work for him. As he departs, he passes Knowland's secretary, Moya Grayle, who is reading something that shocks her so much that she faints into Blake's arms. She is taken off his hands by Knowland's son, Jack, a fine fellow who is secretly engaged to the young woman. Back at Baker Street, the detective discovers the paper Miss Grayles had been reading crumpled in his jacket. On it is a coat of arms — a wolf's head with the phrase, in latin, Man Preys On Man. This turns out to be the coat of arms of the Cynos family. Next morning, Detective-Inspector Coutts calls and reports that Knowland has gone missing. Jack also has news: Miss Grayle has vanished too, leaving a letter in which she breaks off their engagement. Thinking to search the house next door, the police discover that it is inhabited by the Home Secretary, John Selby Waite — the very man who released Cynos! Sexton Blake, upon learning that Cynos has seven sons and one daughter, realises that Moya Grayle is the latter. When she telephones him and asks him to warn Jack to be on his guard against some unspecified danger, Blake traces the call and sends Tinker to shadow the girl. His assistant sees her enter a car that is then driven to Cynos's estate. As Tinker is about to return to report to his guv'nor, the girl reappears and asks to be taken to Baker Street. There she reveals that she has discovered that she is Cynos's daughter and was forced by her father to break her engagement. Now she is rebelling against him. Events take a strange turn when Blake, Tinker and Coutts receive an invitation from Cynos. They go to his house and there find Jack, who has also been invited. The room in which they await their host suddenly sinks — it's a giant lift! Its door slides open to reveal a court room in which Jabez Knowland is on trial. Accused of the murder for which Cynos paid the penalty, he finally folds under the pressure and makes a full confession. Cynos then drives his guests to the Home Secretary's office where he presents the evidence of his innocence and Knowland's guilt. He is granted a full pardon. As they leave, Blake remains behind and reveals that he knows that the Home Secretary is the eldest son of the House of Cynos. He promises to keep quiet about the whole affair in the interests of justice. The next morning, John Selby Waite commits suicide to avoid any scandal. Knowland hangs himself in his prison cell. Jack and Miss Grayle marry. Cynos warns Blake not to interfere again.

Trivia: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,289 THE SEVEN SONS OF CYNOS (1928). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★★



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 1)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Notes: This claims to be adapted from the Sexton Blake radio play of the same name but in fact it is a serialised reprint of THE THREE FRIGHTENED MEN (THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY issue 641, 1938) which had been published just three months previously and from which the radio script had been written. This serial is, therefore, the most rapidly reprinted story in Sexton Blake's history.

Unrated


PAUL CYNOS DEMANDS A MILLION-POUND REVENGE
by Anon. (Robert Murray Graydon)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 311 · 4/2/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received (ed.); The Round Table (ed.); What Happened to the Girl with the Skates? by L. C. Mansfield; The Antlered Man by Edwy Searles Brooks

Notes: A "stool-pigeon" named Jordan Ames informs Sexton Blake that a great number of crooks are gathering in London for something big. Detective-Inspector Coutts ruminates that there's no current criminal big enough to lead a confederation of crooks the way Mr Reece and Dr Satira had done in the past. A taxi arrives at Baker Street: in it, Ames is dying from poisoning. With his last words, he cries "A wolf's head!" and claims that they are after a million. Tinker recognises the wolf's head as being the coat of arms of Paul Cynos. That evening, Sexton Blake receives a letter requesting him to call upon Sir Harley James, the Governor of the National British Bank. At Sir Harley's house, the banker shows him a letter he has received from Cynos in which one million is demanded in payment for the part Sir Harley played — as a key witness — in Cynos's trial. The banker reveals to Blake that a million in bullion is due to be transferred between two London banks, and he gives the detective complete responsibility for this task. When a wolf's head is seen floating outside the window, Blake realises that Cynos's agents have eavesdropped on the conversation. He updates Coutts with the latest information while being driven to inspect the banks. Cynos, though, strikes fast, and when the chauffuer collapses having been given a doped cigarette, Blake narrowly avoids a serious crash. At the bank due to receive the bullion, Blake meets Edgar Reid, the manager, and the chief clerk, Clayton. He quickly suspects the latter of being one of the sons of Cynos. The fortune is to be moved in a motor-pantechnicon. Blake hires six of the vehicles. Five are used as decoys, while the sixth is filled with the bullion by Scotland Yard men. Sexton Blake himself drives it to the bank and parks it in the covered yard. It is here that Cynos's gang strikes. Blake, Coutts and the Yard men are gassed into unconsciousness and the pantechnicon is driven away. Upon regaining consciousness, Blake reveals that the crooks have made off with dummy strongboxes; the real bullion is concealed in the lorry's false bottom. He has another trick up his sleeve too; one of the dummy strongboxes contains a smoke bomb, which is set off by a timer. When smoke pours from a certain person's house, Blake swoops and arrests him — exposing another of Cynos's sons. Of Cynos himself, however, there is no sign; he has fooled them by having his brother, Maximus, impersonate him, ensuring that the police follow the wrong man!

Trivia: Detective-Inspector Coutts's brother-in-law, William Higgins, owns a removal firm. He refers to Coutts as 'Erb, which implies that Coutts's name is Herbert. Of course, this flies against the usual 'George'.

This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,297 A MILLION IN GOLD! (1928). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★★



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 2)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE TRAIL OF THE RED SOMBRERO
by G. H. Teed

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 312 · 11/2/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received (ed.); The Round Table (ed.); She Went to the Pictures... and Her Death by L. C. Mansfield; The Antlered Man by Edwy Searles Brooks

Notes: This is a reprint of SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 250 THE SECRET OF THE STRONG ROOM (1930).

Unrated



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 3)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE BIG SMASH!
by Anon. (Robert Murray Graydon)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 313 · 18/2/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received (ed.); The Round Table (ed.); You're Hanging the Wrong Man! by L. C. Mansfield; The Antlered Man by Edwy Searles Brooks

Notes: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,312 THE MYSTERY OF THE BLACK VAN (1928).

Unrated



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 4)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


FOUR TO DIE!
by Anthony Skene (George N. Philips)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 314 · 25/2/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received (ed.); The Round Table (ed.); A Woman's Fate Lay in a Plate of Soup! by L. C. Mansfield; The Antlered Man by Edwy Searles Brooks

Notes: Story features Zenith the Albino.

Unrated



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 5)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE WOLF OF PARIS
by G. H. Teed

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 315 · 4/3/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table; Sent 7 Times to the Condemned Cell (article); The Antlered Man by E. S. Brooks

Notes: Story features George Marsden Plummer and Vali Mata Vali. This is a reprint of SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 285 THE CRIME OF THE CATACOMBS (1931).

Unrated



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 6)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


JUSTICE AT BAY
by Anon. (Robert Murray Graydon)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 316 · 11/3/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table; He Cleared a Man of Murder... From 3,000 Miles Away (article); The Antlered Man by E. S. Brooks

Notes: Story features Paul Cynos. It is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,327 ARE YOU PAUL CYNOS? (1929).

Unrated



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 7)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CLUE OF THE FLAMING PHOENIX
by Anon. (H. H. Clifford Gibbons)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 317 · 18/3/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table; This Perfect Murder Was Too Perfect (article); The Antlered Man by E. S. Brooks

Notes: This story features Gilbert and Eileen Hale and is believed to be a revised version of an older story (as yet unidentified).

Unrated



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 8)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


MR. WALKER WANTS TO KNOW
by Ernest Dudley

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 318 · 25/3/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner; A Killer Dropped a Match (article)

Notes: This story features Mr. Walker, the 'genial junkman'. Syd Walker was a character made popular on the radio — a rag and bone merchant who was perpetually "bumping inter some queer 'ow-d'yer-do's". He most famously contributed to the hit show BAND WAGON, where he would punctuate the comedy of Arthur Askey and "Stinker" Murdoch with a brief sketch in which the chief character would end up in a seemingly insoluble dilemma. Syd would then ask "What would you do, chums?", inviting the audience to send in their answers. The sketches were scripted by Ernest Dudley (who became known as the "armchair detective"). This story was a major scoop for THE DETECTIVE WEEKLY, combining the incredibly popular radio star with Britain's most written about consulting detective.

Unrated



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 9)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE POISONER
by Gwyn Evans

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 319 · 1/4/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner; These Three Men Might Have Got Away With Murder (article)

Notes: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,293 POISON! (1928).

Unrated



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 10)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE PHANTOM OF THE VELDT
by Rex Hardinge

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 320 · 8/4/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner; This Pair of Battered Boots Trapped a Killer! (article)

Notes: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,285 THE VICTIM OF THE VELDT (1928). It would also be rewritten as THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 4th series issue 430 SAFARI WITH FEAR (1959).

Unrated



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 11)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


DON RICO'S MILLIONS
by G. H. Teed

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 321 · 15/4/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner; The Clue of the Striking Dragon by L. C. Mansfield.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated



Plus:
ENTER SEXTON BLAKE
(part 12)
by Berkeley Gray (Edwy Searles Brooks)

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE MAN ON THE STAIRS
by Gwyn Evans

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 322 · 22/4/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; The Football Murders by Gerald Verner; The Black Widow of Vienna (article); The Mystery of the Bandalong by Reid Whitly

Notes: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,301 WHO WAS THE MAN ON THE STAIRS? (1928).

Unrated


ZENITH THE ALBINO!
by Anthony Skene (George N. Philips)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 323 · 29/4/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner; The Body in the Box by L. C. Mansfield; The Mystery of the Bandalong by Anon.

Notes: Needless to say, the story features Zenith the Albino. It was reprinted in an abridged form in the second SEXTON BLAKE ANNUAL (1940).

Unrated


THE PHANTOM PEARLER
by Rex Hardinge

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 324 · 6/5/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner; The Schoolroom Killer by L. C. Mansfield; The Mystery of the Bandalong by Reid Whitly.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
by Ernest Dudley

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 325 · 13/5/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; Ng' Kee He Collects Payment by Major H. P. Hunter; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner; Who Was the Man Behind the Door? by Keith V. Gordon; The Mystery of the Bandalong by Reid Whitly.

Notes: This is the second and final teaming of Sexton Blake with the popular radio character Mr. Walker. This, and the previous tale (see DETECTIVE WEEKLY issue 318, above) would later be combined in a book published by Wright & Brown but with Blake removed (due to copyright restrictions) and replaced by a different character.

Unrated


GUILTY — BUT INSANE!
by Anon. (Robert Murray Graydon)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 326 · 20/5/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); The Amazing Mr Judbud by Anthony Skene; The Killer Who Didn't Exist by Keith V. Gordon; Tinker's Casebook; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner.

Notes: This is a reprint of material from UNION JACK issue 1,350 KING'S EVIDENCE and UNION JACK issue 1,359 RETRIBUTION (both 1929).

Unrated


OIL PIRATES!
by Anon. (Stacey Blake)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 327 · 27/5/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; The Amazing Mr Judbud by Anthony Skene; Wanted - A Victim! by Keith V. Gordon; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner.

Notes: Three men — Jacob Jamson (real name Bamberger), Julius Crimp and Huckaback J. Baltimore — run the Nautilus Petrolium Syndicate but the source of their oil supply is a mystery. When Captain Bilbery of their ship, the Goldfish, is murdered, Sexton Blake is hired by a government minister to investigate. The man taken on to replace Bilbery is named Captain Christmas. He once came to the aid of Blake in Port Said, so Blake now returns the favour be warning him to be wary of his employers. Blake and Tinker, both heavily disguised, then sign on as crew, with Christmas unaware of their true identity. The Syndicate trio also come aboard as crew (the ship has no passenger licence) though they have no intention of working. The vessel sets sail for an undisclosed destination. En route, Christmas has run-ins with almost everyone aboard, especially with Tamworth, the first mate, and is soon out of favour with the Syndicate. When they attempt to murder him by throwing him overboard, he retaliates by forcing the Syndicate to work as deckhands. Pretty soon, a mutiny is brewing and the crew fool Tinker into thinking it is planned for three days hence. In fact, it happens immediately and Blake & Co. are caught off guard. Forced at gunpoint to cease their meddling, they continue as deckhands until the vessel reaches the Persian gulf. There, they escape and swim ashore where they find that the Syndicate has tapped a British oil pipe. The ship's crew catch up with them and a massive fight erupts. The three escapees are knocked unconscious. The villainous sailors limp back to the Goldfish and report to Tamworth. He sends a man to shoot Blake, Tinker and Christmas dead. The sailor does so when he sees them on a sand dune, outlined against the night sky. However, unknown to him, his victims are, in fact, three of his own crewmates. Blake and his companions take a boat and sail for Port Said. When the Goldfish arrives there, they sign aboard, so heavily disguised that they aren't recognised. The vessel continues its journey to London where it's met by Detective-Inspector Coutts. Blake had sent a wire ahead and now the villains are rounded up and arrested.

Trivia: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,247 THE CASE OF THE OIL PIRATES (1927). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★★


THE WHISTLER!
by Warwick Jardine (Francis Warwick)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 328 · 3/6/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); The Amazing Mr Judbud by Anthony Skene; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner.

Notes: This is a reprint of SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 325 THE GREAT DUMPING MYSTERY (1932).

Unrated


THE BLONDE BOMBSHELL!
by George Hamilton (G. H. Teed)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 329 · 10/6/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); The Amazing Mr Judbud by Anthony Skene; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner.

Notes: This is a reprint of SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 247 THE MASKED KILLER (1930).

Unrated


WALDO THE WONDER-MAN
by Edwy Searles Brooks

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 330 · 17/6/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; His Business was - Poison! by Keith V. Gordon; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner.

Notes: Sexton Blake and Tinker are returning from Paris via a night flight when their journey is interrupted by a seemingly mad passenger. This man, an elderly hunchback, brandishes a gun, snatches a fellow passenger's attache case, then throws himself crashing through a window to plunge to his death. In truth, though, the man's hump is a parachute and his elderly features are a disguise; he is none other than Rupert Waldo. The attache case belongs to a diamond merchant and is filled with precious gems. When Waldo lands in darkness, he buries the treasure before exploring the immediate area. To his dismay, he finds that he has landed inside a huge walled enclosure guarded by jackals. When one attacks, he breaks its neck and flings it over the high wall. Meanwhile, Blake has been commissioned to recover the diamonds. His search leads him to the Chase, the walled premises of Sir Rodney Drummond. Here he finds the dead jackal and, piecing the clues together, he realises that he is dealing with Waldo, who must be inside. Unfortunately, Sir Rodney is not inclined to let Blake in. He's taken a liking to Waldo and has allowed the villain to take refuge with him. Sir Rodney has three enemies; Kern, Maitland and Rorke; men who have blackmailed him almost out of his fortune and who now threaten his life. He offers Waldo fifty thousand pounds to get rid of them (stopping short of murder). The Wonder-Man agrees but upon learning that Blake has been sniffing around realises that his arch foe needs to be put off the scent first. To that end, he instructs Lord Rodney to call the police. Sexton Blake, meanwhile, has scaled the wall, discovered the diamonds and driven away to the local police station where he organises a raid on the Chase. Just as he and the police are preparing, a call comes through from Sir Rodney stating that he has captured an intruder. Blake realises that Sir Rodney and Waldo are in collusion and, as he expects, when the police capture the Wonder-Man, he promptly escapes. The detective can at least content himself with the fact that the diamonds are recovered.

Trivia: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,219 WALDO'S WONDER-STUNT (1927), and the review is from a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★★ Waldo never fails to entertain and Edwy Searles Brookes can always be relied upon to deliver the goods. This is a thoroughly intriguing and enjoyable tale. Incidentally, Blake and Tinker make much use of their Rolls Royce car, the Grey Panther, in this story and its sequels. Earlier in the saga, Blake owned an aeroplane of the same name.


THE GREAT GLACIER BAY PLOT
by Stacey Blake

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 331 · 24/6/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; "Have a Drink," Said the Stranger by Keith V. Gordon; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner.

Notes: A man named Leonard Knightsbridge sells shares in the Supradium Syndicate, a company formed to mine a valuable new resource — supradium — in the Antartic. He hires Captain Christmas to sail the company ship — The Wanderer — to the source of this newly discovered substance but, en route, Christmas discovers that the whole enterprise is a swindle. Knightsbridge and his cohorts intend to scupper the ship and lay low on tropical islands before eventually heading to South America to spend the money the public has invested in the company. Christmas tries to take over the ship, intending to force the criminals to mine the substance as they had promised, but he is drugged and captured. However, when a tornado strikes, the villains return captaincy of the ship to him, as he is the only man skilled enough to save it from the storm. Continuing south, they encounter a homeward bound whaler. Christmas takes this opportunity to send a letter to Sexton Blake. A crewmember named Hockley also sends something — a package to his wife containing the crooks' loot which, after being confiscated by Christmas, Hockley had found. Blake receives the letter and, by accident, the package, which he X-rays. He and Tinker then sail south, catching up with Christmas in the Antartic. The Captain has forced the villains to mine a great deal of supradium but, just as the detective arrives, Knightsbridge and his men escape and sail away in The Wanderer. Christmas, Blake and Tinker give chase in a motor boat and manage to re-take the ship but the supradium in the hold undergoes a chemical reaction which causes it to burn through the hull. The ship sinks, taking the criminals with it. Blake, Tinker and Captain Christmas manage to escape in a lifeboat and are rescued. Back in London, the detective returns the stolen money to those who invested, including his own housekeeper, Mrs Bardell.

Trivia: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,273 ROGUES AFLOAT (1928). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★☆


THE PROFESSIONAL AVENGER
by Edwy Searles Brooks

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 332 · 1/7/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; The Football Pool Murders by Gerald Verner.

Notes: Continuing where issue 330 left off, this story tells how Waldo the Wonder-Man deals with the first of Sir Rodney Drummond's three blackmailers. Oscar Maitland owns an antique shop ... and Waldo makes his acquaintance by crashing a motorcyle through its window! Sexton Blake, meanwhile, has looked into Sir Rodney's past, discovered that he was blackmailed, and has realised that Waldo is after the culprits. Later, at an auction, Maitland is outbid on an item by Lord Blackwood. Waldo has been tailing the antiques dealer and witnesses his annoyance. That evening, he telephones Blackwood and, imitating Maitland's voice, he makes vague threats. He also calls Maitland himself, this time posing as an American millionaire, and makes an appointment to see him. Maitland, excited at the prospect of a new wealthy client, invites Waldo into his home and is promptly drugged. While he sleeps, Waldo burgles Blackwood's house, stealing the item he won at auction and leaving evidence that suggests Maitland committed the crime. Inspector Lennard of Scotland Yard arrests Maitland despite Blake's scepticism. Waldo, aware that the detective is convinced of Maitland's innocence, decides to get Blake out of the way for a month or so while he completes his mission against the three blackmailers. Breaking into the Baker Street house, he forces Blake and Tinker into his car and drives them to the Chase where they are to be held prisoner. However, the detective persuades Sir Rodney to dispense with Waldo's services and walks free, intending to find proof of Maitland's real crimes. This he does but before his evidence can be used, Maitland, who is out on bail, is poisoned to death by his fellow blackmailer, Simon Kern.

Trivia: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,220 THE AFFAIR OF THE PROFESSIONAL AVENGER! (1927). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★★ The momentum builds nicely in this second instalment of the tale and the banter between Blake and Waldo is particularly entertaining. These two enemies like and respect one another; it's only their different view of life that keeps them on opposite sides.



Plus:
THE FATAL FORMULA (part 1)
by Rex Hardinge

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: Serial features The Phantom Sheriff.

Unrated


THE GALLOWS HILL MYSTERY
by G. H. Teed

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 333 · 8/7/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; The Whispering House by Jeffrey Gaunt.

Notes: Story features Dr. Huxton Rymer and Mary Trent. It is a reprint of SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 272 THE CRIME ON GALLOWS HILL (1931).

Unrated



Plus:
THE FATAL FORMULA (part 2)
by Rex Hardinge

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: Serial features The Phantom Sheriff.

Unrated


THE AGONY AD' MYSTERY
by Anthony Skene (George N. Philips)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 334 · 15/7/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; The Whispering House by Jeffrey Gaunt.

Notes: This story features Zenith the Albino and is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,240 THE CASE OF THE FRIEND OF MAY CUBITT (1927).

Unrated



Plus:
THE FATAL FORMULA (part 3)
by Rex Hardinge

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: Serial features The Phantom Sheriff.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE BORGIA'S VENGEANCE
by Gwyn Evans

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 335 · 22/7/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); The Whispering House by Jeffrey Gaunt.

Notes: Story features Splash Page. It is a reprint of SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 271 THE DEATH SIGN (1931).

Unrated



Plus:
THE FATAL FORMULA (part 4)
by Rex Hardinge

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: Serial features The Phantom Sheriff.

Unrated


WALDO'S WONDER STUNT
by Edwy Searles Brooks

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 336 · 29/7/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); The Whispering House by Jeffrey Gaunt.

Notes: In the third-part of this four-issue story, Waldo the Wonder-Man begins watching the second of the three blackmailers he has vowed to put out of business. This man, Hubert Rorke, is a moneylender and he's currently putting the squeeze on a Mr Douglas Hamilton. Waldo learns this from the victim's daughter, Doris. In order to draw Rorke and his fellow-villain, Kern, out into the open, Waldo impersonates Sir Rodney and gives an interview to the press in which he claims that he's opening up his London home and abandoning his life as a hermit in order to wage war on unscrupulous moneylenders and stockbrokers. The real Sir Rodney is horrified to read this and immediately calls for Sexton Blake's protection. Meanwhile, Rorke has left his office after a hoax call from Waldo. The Wonder-Man takes the opportunity to rob his safe. Upon his return, Rorke finds a 'Mr Buckland' waiting for him. Buckland, who is of course Waldo, claims to be acting on behalf of Mr Hamilton and pays that gentleman's loan off in full ... buying back the mortgage deed on Hamilton's property from Rorke with the money he's just stolen! Later, Waldo visits Blake and tells him what he's done. The detective approves but is concerned when, after Waldo has left, he receives a telegram from Doris Hamilton informing him that her father has disappeared. The old man, who has yet to hear that Waldo has solved his problems, is on the verge of a nervous breakdown and has wandered aimlessly away. When Blake arrives, he uses Pedro to track Hamilton's route, which leads to the nearby home of Sir Rodney. There Hamilton is found and, thanks to the detective's medical skills and to the news that his loan has been repaid, he quickly recovers his mental health. Back at Hamilton's home, Waldo has arrived to find everyone gone. Then Rorke turns up determined to get back the mortgage deed by hook or by crook (mostly by crook!). Waldo weights what appears to be the deed (though it isn't really) with a stone and throws it into a slimey pond before leaving. Rorke tries to recover it but starts sinking into the mire. By the time Blake arrives on the scene, the villain has died of fright.

Trivia: This story is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,221 THE CASE OF THE SECOND BLACKMAILER! (1927). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★★ Another first class tale from the ever-impressive Brooks. In this episode there's the sense that Waldo is considering changing his ways, regretting the fact that he usually operates on the wrong side of the law, but, ultimately his buccaneering spirit wins out. A year before Leslie Charteris created Simon Templar (when this story was written), Brooks was way ahead, giving Waldo all the breezy scampishness of the Saint ... and then some!



Plus:
THE FATAL FORMULA (part 5)
by Rex Hardinge

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: Serial features The Phantom Sheriff.

Unrated


THE RIDDLE OF THE KING-CROOK'S MESSENGER
by Anon. (H. H. Clifford Gibbons)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 337 · 5/8/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Tinker's Casebook; The Whispering House by Jeffrey Gaunt.

Notes: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,252 THE MYSTERY OF THE MASTER CROOK'S MESSENGER (1927).

Unrated



Plus:
THE FATAL FORMULA (part 6)
by Rex Hardinge

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: Serial features The Phantom Sheriff.

Unrated


THE FORT OF LOST MEN
by George Hamilton (G. H. Teed)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 338 · 12/8/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); The Whispering House by Jeffrey Gaunt.

Notes: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,291 THE LEGION OF THE LOST (1928).

Unrated



Plus:
THE FATAL FORMULA (part 7)
by Rex Hardinge

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: Serial features The Phantom Sheriff.

Unrated


YELLOW FACE
by Anthony Skene (George N. Philips)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 339 · 19/8/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); One Clue Could Convict Him of Murder - and He Carried That in His Own Body! by L. C. Mansfield; The Whispering House by Jeffrey Gaunt.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SIMON KERN PAYS IN FULL
by Edwy Searles Brooks

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 340 · 26/8/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); He Had to Order His Own Son's Execution by L. C. Mansfield; The Whispering House by Jeffrey Gaunt.

Notes: The morning after a night of severe thunderstorms, a mysterious female telephones Sexton Blake and informs him that he might find something interesting at a specific spot on Wimbledon Common. Intrigued, Blake goes there and discovers, in an area overlooked by Simon Kern's house, the burnt remains of a man who has been struck by lightning. Kern is the last survivor of the three blackmailers who Waldo the Wonder-Man has been hunting. However, it appears that he is safe, for evidence found on the charred corpse suggests that the dead man is none other than Rupert Waldo! Detective-Inspector Lennard is called to the scene and, with Blake and Tinker, follows a trail leading from the body to Kern's house. They find the place in disarray; obviously the scene of a fierce fight. According to the housekeeper, Kern is upstairs asleep but when they go up they find his room empty. The gardener informs them that he saw Kern leave ten minutes ago, although he admits that he can't be certain it was his employer he saw. Blake forms the theory that the dead body is, in fact, Kern, while the man seen leaving the house was Waldo — who murdered Kern, diguised the death as a fatality by lightning, then planted evidence of his own identity on the body. The detective and his assistant return to Baker Street only to find Waldo sitting comfortably in their consulting room! He tells them the real story: the body was that of a by-passer who was genuinely struck down by the storm. Waldo took advantage of the situation by planting evidence to make it look like he and Kern had confronted one another with the argument culminating in Waldo's death. The plan, he hoped, would lead to Kern being hanged for murder. Now, though, the blackmailer is on the run. When Waldo reveals that Sir Rodney Drummond has gone abroad, Blake surmises that Kern has probably taken refuge in The Chase, Sir Rodney's fortified country house. He and Waldo decide to join forces in order to force Kern to confess his crimes. At The Chase, they take on roles as the ghosts of the blackmailer's former colleagues, Maitland and Rorke, terrifying him into the admission that he poisoned Maitland. In consequence, Lennard makes an arrest and Waldo's mission is completed. Having enjoyed himself so much, Rupert Waldo now starts wondering whether life might be better on the right side of the law.

Trivia: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,222 THE LIGHTNING-FLASH MYSTERY! (1927). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★☆ A nice climax to an excellent sequence of adventures but one that suffers slightly in comparison to its forerunners; the denoument feels slightly too hurried. Nevertheless, the initial mystery — is Waldo dead? — works wonderfully ... and his growing conviction that, just perhaps, it's time to be less of a villain and more of a hero is both touching and intriguing.


THE CARRIER PIGEON PLOT
by Anon. (H. H. Clifford Gibbons)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 341 · 2/9/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); He Had to Prove Himself a Bank Thief - Or Hang! by L. C. Mansfield; The Whispering House by Jeffrey Gaunt.

Notes: Story features Gilbert and Eileen Hale. This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,296 THE CARRIER PIGEON CONSPIRACY (1928).

Unrated


THE GNOMID
by Anon. (H. H. Clifford Gibbons)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 342 · 9/9/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: The Round Table (ed.); From Information Received; Tinker's Casebook; The Whispering House by Jeffrey Guant; Smuggler's Cunning (article).

Notes: An aristocratic family with a curse, a perilous marsh, and a hideous beast bringing death to those unfortunate enough to encounter it. There's a definite touch of HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES about this one. But of course, it's Blake not Holmes, so H. H. Clifford Gibbons throws in as many extra ingredients as possible: a thrilling aeroplane chase that ends in a mid-air collision, a lake-bottom hideaway that floods with our heroes trapped inside, a raging inferno and plenty of fist fights. The story begins with Warrender, a hulking great man, observing the comings and goings in a disreputable drinking den. In fact, he is a leading West End actor studying for a role. Unfortunately, things get out of hand and a fight erupts during which he retrieves a roll of canvas. To his amazement, it's a painting by Van Dyke; a portrait of a beautiful girl. He takes the painting to Sexton Blake who immediately recognises it as the recently stolen property of Lord Carham. Blake, Tinker and Warrender set off for the Fens, a large expanse of extremely flat land in the east of England. The author does a great job of creating a still and silent, mist enshrouded landscape. Before they've even had a chance to meet him, Lord Carham is murdered, his chest punctured by huge wide-spread claws. Through the mist, Blake captures a glimpse of a hunched, animal-like figure. It is, the house servant tells them, the gnomid, a legendary creature that has cursed the Carham family for generations. A painting of it hangs on the wall, hidden behind a tapestry. Every time the painting is shown, so the legend goes, something terrible happens. Before Blake has time to investigate further, there's another shock. A girl comes crashing through the glass of the patio doors. Fortunately, she is not badly hurt and is able to explain that she was on her way to an appointment with a local landowner when she was chased by the creature. Bizarrely, she bears an uncanny resemblance to the girl in the Van Dyke portrait. How does she relate to the mystery? What is the creature? And who's behind the deadly conspiracy? Of course, Blake gets to the bottom of it (and, simultaneously, to the bottom of a lake).

Trivia: The artwork on the cover of this edition pays a nice little homage to the original UNION JACK cover, which can be seen in the picture frame.

This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,369 THE GNOMID (1929). The review is based on a reading of that issue. The original story was also was anthologised in THE CASEBOOK OF SEXTON BLAKE (2009).

Rating: ★★★★★ There's plenty of chasing, shooting and fighting in this adventure, with Warrender getting a big slice of the action, proving to be a strong, resourceful and likeable character. Unfortunately, this means that Tinker gets rather pushed into the background. You even forget he's there until he pipes up and says something. Nevertheless, The Gnomid is an excellent and highly entertaining example of Blake at his best.



Plus:
THE MURDER CABINET! (Play)
by Jack Payne

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE WERE-WOLF MYSTERY
by Anon. (George N. Philips)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 343 · 16/9/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: The Round Table (ed.); From Information Received; He Stepped on the Alarm Bell by Anon.; The Grouser Investigates by E. S. Brooks.

Notes: Story features Zenith the Albino. This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,216 THE AFFAIR OF THE WERE-WOLF (1927).

Unrated


THE BANKNOTE BANDITS
by Anon. (Donald Bobin)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 344 · 23/9/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: The Round Table (ed.); From Information Received; The Grouser Investigates by E. S. Brooks.

Notes: The author is the son of John W. Bobin.

Unrated


THE MAN WHO BOUGHT YOUTH
by Anon. (Ladbroke Black)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 345 · 30/9/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Tinker's Casebook; From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); The Grouser Investigates by E. S. Brooks.

Notes: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 1,300 THE STRANGE AFFAIR OF THE REJUVENATION CLUB (1928).

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE BLAZING ISLAND
by Anon. (G. H. Teed)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 346 · 7/10/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: The Round Table (ed.); The Hogs'-Fat Clue by Anon.; From Information Received; The Grouser Investigates by E. S. Brooks.

Notes: Financier Jacob Thornhill catches a bedraggled and down-on-his-luck Dr Huxton Rymer breaking into his safe. Rather than turning him over to the police, Thornhill commissions Rymer to do a job for him in Costa Rica. In that country, some weeks later, Britisher David Grieg arrives to take possession of a banana plantation he has purchased on Negrito Island — but finds that a Spaniard named Sancho has already claimed it. Sailing to the island, Grieg meets with Sancho and learns that the Spaniard bought the island a month ago from its owners, Thornhill and Meyer. Grieg, though, purchased it six weeks ago from a man named Gilbert, who had been an agent for Thornhill and Meyer. Sancho claims that Gilbert is a crook and has swindled Grieg but invites the Britisher to stay on the island for the night. During the hours of darkness, Grieg is awakened when a deadly snake is thrown onto his bed from the window. He survives, little suspecting that Sancho had arranged the attack. The next morning he leaves the island but, en route to Costa Rica, is thrown overboard. He is picked up by a ship bound for Bristol and, from there, makes his way to Baker Street. Sexton Blake, taking up the case, disguises himself as Grieg and visits Thornhill and Meyer. He is informed by Jacob Thornhill that Gilbert is considered a criminal and had no right to sell the plantation. However, Blake catches sight of Gilbert in the building. Back at Baker Street, he instructs Grieg to return to the Carribean, not knowing that Thornhill wants this and has sent Gilbert there to team up with Sancho in order to kill the young Britisher. All parties gather at Negrito Island — Blake and Tinker disguised as natives, and here the detective learns that his opponent, Sancho, is none other than Dr Huxton Rymer. During the night, Blake creeps into Rymer's house and steals papers which prove his and Gilbert's guilt. However, the black foreman of the plantation, intent on thievery, also sneaks into the house and, when Blake runs for it, gives chase. The two engage in a terrific fight which the detective eventually wins only to find that the noise has attracted Rymer and Gilbert and he must now face them. He manages to knock Rymer unconscious after a fairly fought boxing match but is then, in turn, sent into oblivion when Gilbert, in an unsportsmanlike move, strikes him with the butt of a pistol. Tinker and Grieg arrive in time to overpower Gilbert while Blake recovers and Rymer escapes. Gilbert makes a full confession. Thornhill finds himself facing criminal charges and Grieg finally gets his island.

Trivia: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 591 THE MYSTERY OF THE BANANA PLANTATION (1915). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★★


THE DOCTOR'S DUPES
by Anon. (Andrew Murray)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 347 · 14/10/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: J. H. Valda

Other content: The Round Table (ed.); The Grouser Investigates by E. S. Brooks.

Notes: Police Inspector Bragley is puzzled when a fourth girl, in as many days, is found unconscious in Aylesbury Square. Like the others, she is taken to a nearby doctor, Professor Kew, but, once recovered, refuses to speak of her experience. Bragley doesn't know it but all four girls have been Kew's 'guinea pigs', testing a narcotic he has developed. The inspector visits Sexton Blake and tells him about the case. The detective begins investigating. When Kew learns of this, he decides that, as this is his first foray into crime, he should test Blake. He therefore sends him an anonymous note which reveals that, at the Ranee of Magwar's ball, he intends to steal her priceless emerald necklace. He challenges the detective to prevent this theft. At the ball, a dissipated young nobleman, Lord Alpineby, who is under Kew's power, gives the Ranee a gift of a small ivory casket. When she opens it, fumes from the narcotic send her into a trance. Alpineby leads her into the garden and leaves her there. Kew then takes the necklace and makes off, though not without his shadowy figure being spotted by Blake. Next day, the detective goes to Alpineby's flat to question him but finds him vanished; and there are signs of a struggle and traces of the drug. He takes the latter to a chemist for analysis but the substance isn't recognised. Blake is referred to the expert in such matters — Professor Kew! — and during the subsequent interview quickly recognises him as the man behind the crimes. Blake sets Tinker to keep watch on the criminal and the lad follows Kew to a house where Alpineby is imprisoned. He sends a note to his guv'nor shortly before falling into the hands of the villain. Blake comes to the rescue and also recovers the emerald necklace but Kew gets away to fight another day.

Trivia: This is a revised version of the first Professor Kew story — THE AYLESBURY SQUARE MYSTERY — which appeared in UNION JACK issue 511 (1913).

Rating: ★★★★★


THE GREAT RACING RACKET
by Anon. (G. H. Teed)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 348 · 21/10/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: J. H. Valda

Other content: The Round Table (ed.); The Grouser Investigates by E. S. Brooks; Sandy Logan Soccer Star by Anon.

Notes: Story features George Marsden Plummer and is believed to be a revised version of an older story (as yet unidentified).

Unrated


DANGER IN DIAMONDS
by Anon. (Andrew Murray)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 349 · 28/10/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: The Round Table (ed.); The Grouser Investigates by E. S. Brooks; Sandy Logan Soccer Star by Anon.

Notes: Story features Count Ivor Carlac and is believed to be a revised version of an older story (as yet unidentified).

Unrated


THE CIRCLE OF STEEL
by Anon. (John W. Bobin)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 350 · 4/11/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: From Information Received; The Grouser Investigates by E. S. Brooks; The Round Table (ed.)

Notes: Story features George Marsden Plummer. This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 644 THE CIRCLE OF STEEL (1916).

Unrated


THE GIRL WHO MADE PEARLS
by Anon. (G. H. Teed)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 351 · 11/11/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: The Round Table (ed.); From Information Received; Traitor's Rock by Geo E. Rochester.

Notes: In Australia, eight men — Ike Vineburg being foremost among them — swindle a ranch owner named Mrs Cartier out of all she possesses. Shocked by her losses, the woman collapses and dies. Her daughter, Yvonne, realises that a swindle has occurred and vows revenge on the men. Months later, disguised as a male jockey, she joins Vineburg's stables and rises through the ranks until she is given the task of riding in the Melbourne Cup. She purposely loses the race at the last moment, costing Vineburg thousands of pounds. Having herself won a considerable sum, Yvonne sets sail for Europe. Six years later, aboard her yacht — which is captained by Captain Vaughan and has Hendricks as Mate — she plans with her uncle, Jack Graves, running a vigilante campaign against all men of Vineburg's type. By this time, the villain in question is operating as a jeweller in London under the assumed name of Bechstein. With his finances pressed to the limit, he seeks credit on a valuable pearl necklace only to be informed that it is fake; the original has been stolen. In desperation, he calls Sexton Blake. Yvonne discovers this and visits the detective in the guise of an elderly nun. Blake is immediately suspicious and sends Tinker to follow her when she leaves but she turns the tables and captures the lad. Blake's investigations lead him to an isolated farmhouse known as the Grange where Yvonne has her underground base and here he too becomes her prisoner. The next day, they make their escape while Yvonne, disguised as Tinker, visits Blake's Baker Street office to search for the evidence against her. The detective and his assistant arrive and a long car chase ensues, leading them to Yvonne's moored yacht where, once again, Blake and Tinker are taken prisoner. Yvonne offers the detective the chance to join her campaign. He refuses but, when she tells him her full story, he offers a truce providing she gives up the pearl necklace. She does so and they part both feeling strangely stirred by their new-found relationship. Bechstein/Vineburg commits suicide before Blake has a chance to return the pearls.

Trivia: This is a revised version of the first Mlle. Yvonne Cartier story — BEYOND REACH OF THE LAW — which first appeared in UNION JACK issue 485 (1913).

Rating: ★★★★★


RATS OF LONDON'S RIVER
by Anon. (Andrew Murray)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 352 · 18/11/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: The Round Table (ed.); From Information Received; Traitor's Rock by Geo E. Rochester.

Notes: This is believed to be a revised version of an older story (as yet unidentified).

Unrated


PRESIDENT PLUMMER
by Anon. (Norman Goddard)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 353 · 25/11/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: From Information Received; The Round Table (ed.); Traitor's Rock by Geo E. Rochester.

Notes: A Brazilian minister commissions Sexton Blake to help restore the former president of Santa Lucia to power. Fillipi Malia was deposed by Lopez de Garcia who is now denying Brazil the privileges it had previously enjoyed. With a loan of £500,000 in bullion, the former president is ready to depart Britain for the small South American republic ... but then assassins attempt to kill him. They are prevented from doing so by George Marsden Plummer, who happens upon the murder attempt. However, the master crook then throws in his lot with the assassins, convincing them that if they help him to usurp Garcia, he will share the wealth of the country's silver mines with them. Disguising himself as a sailor, Plummer bribes his way into the position of second mate aboard the ship that will carry Malia across the Atlantic. It will also carry the ex-president's daughter, Rosina, whom Plummer has fallen in love with. To his dismay, Sexton Blake also joins the passengers. Days later, as the vessel nears its destination, Plummer's men strike and the ship is captured. Plummer is shocked to discover that the man he had thought to be Blake is, in fact, a cleverly made up actor named Will Alton. With the detective's whereabouts unknown, Plummer continues with his plan. He makes himself up to impersonate Malia and informs Rosina that she must act as his daughter to protect her imprisoned father's life. He then leads the 'revolution' and overthrows Lopez de Garcia. The chief of the silver mines proves to be a Britisher named Jack Leyland and Plummer is quick to spot that this man is a rival suitor for Rosina. When the loaned bullion turns out to be nothing but lead, Leyland and his men realise that they won't be paid and so refuse to work. Plummer takes Leyland captive but in doing so he reveals his identity to a watcher: Sexton Blake. The detective, with the real bullion, has travelled to the republic on a yacht and is now observing the master criminal. The two confront each other but Blake is overpowered and is sentenced to death by firing squad. Tinker radios to the yacht for help and rescuers arrive just in time to save the detective. Plummer is captured and Malia restored to power. Due to the progress made in the country under Plummer's dictatorship, he is allowed to go free. Leyland and Rosina marry.

Trivia: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 475 THE CASE OF THE £500,000 LOAN (1912). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★☆


THE CASE OF THE PURPLE COTTON
by Anon. (G. H. Teed)
No cover image as yet

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 354 · 2/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: Story features Mlle. Yvonne Cartier. This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 492 ON THE BRINK OF RUIN (1913).

Unrated


THE GREEN EYE OF BANYAH
by Anon. (G. H. Teed)

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 355 · 9/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Traitor's Rock by Geo E. Rochester; The Round Table (ed.)

Notes: Story features George Marsden Plummer and is believed to be a revised version of an older story (as yet unidentified).

Unrated


THE LEERING CASTLE CRIME
by Anon. (Andrew Murray)
No cover image as yet

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 356 · 16/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: This is believed to be a revised version of an older story (as yet unidentified).

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE MONEY KING
by Anon. (G. H. Teed)
No cover image as yet

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 357 · 23/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: This is a reprint of UNION JACK issue 495 SETTLING DAY (1913).

Unrated


THE BROTHERHOOD OF TWELVE
by Anon. (G. H. Teed)
No cover image as yet

DETECTIVE WEEKLY · Issue 358 · 30/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: This is believed to be a revised version of an older story (as yet unidentified).

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 1)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 1 · 4/03/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 2)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 2 · 11/03/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 3)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 3 · 18/03/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 4)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 4 · 25/03/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 5)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 5 · 01/04/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: With reports of Sexton Blake's death spreading, The Hooded Stranger is free to put his scheme into action. Disguised as an old man, he goes from door to door distributing cakes of soap. However, unknown to him, Blake and Tinker escaped from the blazing plane and have entered his underground fort where they observe as a fleet of tanks leave. Commandeering one of the vehicles, they follow the convoy. Meanwhile, in wealthy houses across London, the cakes of soap are releasing a powerful sleeping gas. As hundreds of people fall unconscious, The Hooded Stranger's tanks arrive. A huge burglary is about to be committed!

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 6)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 6 · 08/04/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 7)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 7 · 15/04/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: The Hooded Stranger uses the crane to lift the tank high off the ground and states his intention to drop it, killing Blake and Tinker. The detectives leap and catch hold of the crane's grab as it lets go of the tank. The Hooded Stranger tries to shake them off but they climb the rope and shin down the jib towards the crane's cabin. The villain flees as soldiers arrive and round up his gang. Sexton Blake finally corners him but finds himself standing on a plank above a long drop with his opponent on the other end ... the Hooded Stranger only has to step off and Blake will plunge to his death!

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 8)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 8 · 22/04/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 9)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 9 · 29/04/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Blake and Tinker leap onto motor bikes and pursue the Hooded Stranger. The crook drives to a monoplane, boards it and takes off, intending to take the bomber plans to Etland to sell to its dictator, General Bomgas. A week later, Sir John Charters, head of the British Secret Service, visits Sexton Blake at his Baker Street home. He asks the detective to go to Etland to investigate General Bomgas's activities. Upon their arrival in the remote country, Blake and Tinker are held at gunpoint and escorted to a large prison camp.

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 10)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 10 · 06/05/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 11)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 11 · 13/05/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 12)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 12 · 20/05/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 13)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 13 · 27/05/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 14)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 14 · 03/06/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: To avoid the dynamite train, Sexton Blake pilots the plane beneath the bridge, smashing both wings off and crash-landing into the river. As the current sweeps him towards a waterfall, General Bomgas and the Hooded Stranger gloat over their possession of the plans for the secret British bomber. Blake uses a rope as a lasso and manages to hook a tree stump. However, it's not enough to save the plane from toppling over the edge of the falls. Meanwhile, Bomgas announces that he will construct five hundred of the bombers.

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 15)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 15 · 10/06/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 16)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 16 · 17/06/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Bomgas speeds away, sending Sexton Blake sprawling. A soldier tries to capture the detective but is overpowered by Tinker and King Boris. Blake and his assistant head after Bomgas while the king goes to rally his followers. Meanwhile, Bomgas and the Hooded Stranger lay a trap for Blake. However, Blake out-wits them and seems to have finally cornered the villain. But then, Bomgas presses a secret button...

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 17)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 17 · 24/06/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 18)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 18 · 01/07/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 19)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 19 · 08/07/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sexton Blake bombs the cave in which General Bomgas is hiding, trapping him inside. He then flies on in pursuit of the Hooded Stranger. Bomgas's men start digging their leader out but, while they are thus occupied, King Boris captures Zomberg Aerodrome. Blake flies over the Hooded Stranger's tank and lowers a grapple hook. It catches but causes the plane to dive. Tinker crawls out of the cockpit and cuts the line.

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 20)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 20 · 15/07/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sexton Blake and Tinker watch as Bomgas's tanks enter the ocean and disappear beneath the surface. King Boris arrives by plane and flies the two detectives to a nearby sea fort which they intend to capture in order to find diving gear. Blake uses a crane to smash a large piece of equipment into the fort. Bomgas's men run out ... straight into King Boris's oncoming troops.

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 21)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 21 · 22/07/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 22)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 22 · 29/07/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sexton Blake and Tinker overpower a sentry who's standing guard at an entrance to Bomgas's undersea fort. However, before entering the metal monolith, they decide to investigate the wrecked ship which seems to be of so much interest to Bomgas's men. They are spotted by the General and the Hooded Stranger but, with most of their men at the wreck, there's little the villains can do. The detectives look into the ship's hold where they see the enemy unloading a cargo of British machine guns. Blake closes and locks the doors on them, trapping them inside. He and Tinker then head back to the sea fort.

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 23)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 23 · 05/08/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 24)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 24 · 12/08/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Bomgas's underwater aeroplanes fire at the tank driven by Sexton Blake. The detective drives into a cave for shelter. When a killer whale attacks the 'planes, Blake takes advantage of the diversion and steers up a slope towards the surface. However, enemy tanks are in hot pursuit.

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 25)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 25 · 19/08/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: As Sexton Blake and Tinker emerge from the sea in the underwater tank, they spot a gunboat nearby. It belongs to King Boris, who is fighting to regain the throne from Bomgas the dictator of Etland. As he welcomes them aboard, far below, in the steel fort on the sea bed, Bomgas learns of the detectives' escape. He directs the fort to a position beneath the gunboat and from it a huge metal claw extends and clamps shut on the keel of King Boris's vessel. Slowly, the claw drags the boat down!

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 26)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 26 · 26/08/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 27)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 27 · 02/09/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 28)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 28 · 09/09/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: King Boris uses his ship's anchor to haul the tank in which Sexton Blake is trapped from the mud on the ocean floor. General Bomgas guides his sea fort towards the tank, attempting to crush it. At the last moment, the tank breaks free of the mud and Blake manages to start its engine. The General sends out a sea-fighter — a sort of underwater plane — after it. The tank is hit by gunfire and begins to flood.

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 29)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 29 · 16/09/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: With their sea tank safe beneath General Bomgas's undersea fort, Blake is forced to drive along beneath it in order to stay under cover. On advice from the Hooded Stranger, Bomgas steers his fort towards Secret Island. However, as the huge craft passes over a cleft in the sea bed, the smaller vehicle beneath falls into it. The fortess emerges onto the island where Bomgas discovers that Blake has vanished. Undeterred, he shows the Hooded Stranger his extenive base hidden inside the island's central crater.

Rating: ★★★★☆


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 30)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 30 · 22/09/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 31)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 31 · 30/09/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 32)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 32 · 07/10/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 33)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 33 · 14/10/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 34)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 34 · 21/10/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 35)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 35 · 28/10/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 36)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 36 · 04/11/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 37)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 37 · 11/11/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 38)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 38 · 18/11/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 39)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 39 · 25/11/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 40)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 40 · 02/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Alfred Taylor)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE AND THE HOODED STRANGER
(part 41)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 41 · 09/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Jos Walker)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE ON SPECIAL SERVICE
by Anon. (Percy Clarke)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 42 · 16/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Alfred Taylor)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE ON SPECIAL SERVICE
by Anon. (Percy Clarke)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 43 · 23/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Alfred Taylor)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE ON SPECIAL SERVICE
by Anon. (Percy Clarke)
Knockout Comic

THE KNOCK-OUT COMIC · Issue 44 · 30/12/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Anon. (Alfred Taylor)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE THIRD VICTIM
by Donald Stuart

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 653 · Jan. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Murder Below Zero (article)

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE MYSTERY OF THE CONDEMNED COTTAGE
by Gilbert Chester (H. H. Clifford Gibbons)
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 654 · Jan. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE KIDNAPPED PRISONER
by Allan Blair (William J. Bayfield)
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 655 · Jan. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Victims of Poison (article)

Notes: My copy is missing its cover.

Unrated


THE FATAL FORTUNE
by Andrew Murray

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 656 · Jan. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Label Clue (article).

Notes: Story features Count Ivor Carlac and Professor Kew.

Unrated


THE MYSTERY OF THE GREEN BOTTLE
by John G. Brandon

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 657 · Feb. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Unknown Informer (article).

Notes: Story features R. S. V. Purvale.

Unrated


THE RIDDLE OF UGLY FACE
by Pierre Quiroule (W. W. Sayer)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 658 · Feb. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Stolen Pay-Roll (article)

Notes: Story features Granite Grant and Mlle. Julie.

Unrated


THE PHANTOM OF THE MILL
by Lester Bidston

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 659 · Feb. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); A Queer Motive (article)

Notes: This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 108 (1927).

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE MISSING MUSICIAN
by Rex Hardinge

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 660 · Feb. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Murder on the Farm (article)

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE GREAT HUSH-HUSH MYSTERY
by Maurice B. Dix

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 661 · Mar. 1937 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Murder at the College (article).

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE RIDDLE OF THE LOST SHIP
by John Hunter

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 662 · Mar. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Second Attempt (article)

Notes: Story features Captain Dack.

Unrated


THE NIGHT CLUB MYSTERY
by G. H. Teed

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 663 · Mar. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Murder in the Pacific (article)

Notes: Sexton Blake, Tinker and Detective-Inspector Thomas visit the Green Parrot club, which is an outlet for illegally brewed liquor. After obtaining a bottle of 'moonshine' whisky from the club, Blake sends Tinker to the Leeds factory where the bottle was made. When mysterious lorries arrive to pick up a cargo of bottles that match the one used for the illegal booze, Tinker stows away aboard one of the trucks, which is then driven to a secret location. There, he is spotted and knocked unconscious. He's recognised by Reggie Fetherston, who orders him put aboard a barge with the bottles. The prisoner and cargo are then transported to a secluded gorge and carried into a complex system of caves where huge stills are producing the illegal whisky. Here also are Algy Somerton and Archie Pherison; the whole operation is run by the Three Musketeers! The criminal trio lower Tinker into a cave shaft that opens into unknown depths. He has light and food for just three days. After two days have passed, Sexton Blake heads north in the Grey Panther to search for his assistant. He follows the trail and ends up captured by the crooked trio. They brutalise Pedro in front of the detective before throwing the bloodhound into the shaft. Blake goes into a berserker rage and attacks the criminals and their gang but is overpowered and lowered into the darkness. At the bottom of the shaft, he finds Pedro and, after a while, Tinker. Seeking escape, they follow the course of an underground stream until, eventually, they are sucked into a whirlpool and swept up into pool on the surface, near Whitby. They visit the local police and gather a large force of men to raid the crooks' base. The gang is caught and arrested but the Three Musketeers escape. However, they have not taken Pedro's nose into account and the vengeful hound soon tracks them down. The trio are arrested and their villainous career finally comes to an end ... at least until 2014, when I recounted their next criminal escapade in THE SILENT THUNDER CAPER (SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY, 6th series, issue 1).

Trivia: This story has a haunting scene in which Pedro, at Baker Street, senses Tinker's peril ... and so does Mrs Bardell! This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 82 (1927). The review is based on a reading of that issue.

Rating: ★★★★★


FATAL FORGERY
by J. G. Brandon
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 664 · Mar. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE MYSTERY OF THE AFRICAN FARM
by Rex Hardinge
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 665 · Apr. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Long-Lost Relative (article)

Notes: My copy is missing the cover.

Unrated


THE GREAT AIR SWINDLE
by John Creasey

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 666 · Apr. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); A Grave Error of Justice (article).

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE SIGN OF THE BLACK FEATHER
by Hylton Gregory (H. Egbert Hill)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 667 · Apr. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Pain of Death (article).

Notes: Story features Gunga Dass. This is a reprint of THE RIDDLE OF THE AMBER ROOM in THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 102 (1927).

Unrated


THE MONASTERY MYSTERY
by Gilbert Chester (H. H. Clifford Gibbons)
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 668 · Apr. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE A.R.P. MYSTERY
by Barry Perowne (P. Atkey)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 669 · May 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Proceeds of Death (article)

Notes: Sir Storry Hunt, from Shropshire, visits Sexton Blake with a strange tale about his neighbour — a Dutchman named Hannen Camp — who has built a large bomb shelter in his grounds. Camp's insane wife, Virginia, tried to warn Sir Storry about something and urged him to contact an American detecive named Raeburn Scribe — who is currently based in London — to communicate to him the word 'Paradier'. Scribe, though, denies all knowledge of the Camps and doesn't know the significance of the mysterious word. Blake's suspicions are aroused and he sends Tinker to keep an eye on the Camp estate. Meanwhile, A. J. Raffles and his sidekick Bunny Manders become mixed up in a feud between two detective agencies, one of them being Scribe's. Many years ago Scribe and his then partner, Allardyce, had smashed a gang known as The Earthquake Men but had then argued about some unknown matter and dissolved their agency. Raffles uses the ongoing fight as a means to infiltrate the Allardyce agency, the plan being that Bunny will take a job there in order to pick up information about wealthy clients who, for Raffles, will provide rich pickings. However, the scheme goes awry when Bunny is implicated in the murder of one of Scribe's men and then goes missing. This brings Raffles to the attention of Scotland Yard and Sexton Blake. Tinker then witnesses a gunfight at the Camp house and, for Blake, the pieces of the jigsaw fall into place. He realises that the battle between Scribe and Allardyce is not what it seems. Furthermore, a gigantic plot against Britain is reaching its final stages and 'Paradier' is the name of the man behind it. Without knowing the details, Raffles, while rescuing Bunny, breaks up Paradier's gang. Blake arrives in time to conclude matters, ending the threat against Britain, but is unable to capture Raffles, who makes away with a considerable haul of cash.

Trivia: Tinker is described as having grey eyes and brown hair — a change from the usual blue eyes and blonde hair. This is the fourth and final confrontation between Sexton Blake and A. J. Raffles.

Rating: ★★★★★


THE MAN FROM SINGAPORE
by J. G. Brandon
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 670 · May 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE HAREM MYSTERY
by Anthony Parsons
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 671 · May 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE RIDDLE OF THE WEST-END HAIRDRESSER
by Gilbert Chester (H. H. Clifford Gibbons)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 672 · May 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Stealing the Great Seal (article)

Notes: Story features Gilbert and Eileen Hale. This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 131 (1928).

Unrated



Plus:
THE FATAL 13TH
by Donald Stuart

Illustrator: None

Notes: This is reprinted from THE SEXTON BLAKE ANNUAL 1938.

Unrated


THE 13TH CODE
by Warwick Jardine (Francis Warwick)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 673 · Jun. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Murder or Lies? (article)

Notes: Story features Ted Flanagan.

Unrated


THE MYSTERY OF THE LORRY DRIVER
by Paul Urquhart (L. L. Day Black)
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 674 · Jun. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE BURMESE DAGGER
by Donald Stuart
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 675 · Jun. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: A tale of Trouble Nantucket. This is a rewrite of SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 1st series issue 102 THE CASE OF THE BURMESE DAGGER (1919), which was written by Andrew Murray.

Unrated


THE GREAT TRUNK MYSTERY
by Hylton Gregory (Reginald H. Poole)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 676 · Jun. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Phantom Legacies (article).

Notes: None at present. This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 116 (1927).

Unrated


MURDER ON THE ICE RINK
by J. G. Brandon

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 677 · Jul. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: The Family Crime (article); Consulting Room Chat (ed.)

Notes: Story features R. S. V. Purvale.

Unrated


THE RIDDLE OF THE NEGRO'S HEAD
by Coutts Brisbane (R. C. Armour)
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 678 · Jul. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE STOLEN POLICE DOSSIER
by Allan Blair (William J. Bayfield)
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 679 · Jul. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE TOUR OF TERROR
by Mark Osborne (John W. Bobin)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 680 · Jul. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Perfect Crime (article)

Notes: This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 112 (1927).

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE CROOK RAJAH
by Anthony Parsons
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 681 · Aug. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


IN THE HANDS OF SPIES
by J. G. Brandon
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 682 · Aug. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE IMPERSONATORS
by Edwy Searles Brooks

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 683 · Aug. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); A Bad Bargain (article)

Notes: Story features Waldo the Wonder-man. This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 33 (1926).

Unrated


THE RIDDLE OF THE EVIL EYE
by Pierre Quiroule (W. W. Sayer)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 684 · Aug. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Tongue-tied Crooks (article)

Notes: Story features Granite Grant and Mlle. Julie.

Unrated


THE SECRET OF THE CELLAR
by Walter Edwards (Walter Shute)
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 685 · Sep. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE DEPOSITORY MYSTERY
by Gilbert Chester (H. H. Clifford Gibbons)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 686 · Sep. 1937 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Plans Go Wrong (article).

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE BOGUS MONK
by G. H. Teed

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 687 · Sep. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Unseen Crime (article)

Notes: Story features George Marsden Plummer and Vali Mata-Vali. This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 144 (1928).

Unrated



Plus:
THE INNKEEPER'S FATE
by Anon. (unknown)

Illustrator: Unknown

Notes: This very short tale primarily features Pedro the Bloodhound.

Unrated


THE RIDDLE OF THE RANCH
by Warwick Jardine (Francis Warwick)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 688 · Sep. 1937 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Loser Pays (article).

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE MAN WITH JITTERS
by J. G. Brandon
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 689 · Oct. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE HIDDEN MENACE
by Donald Stuart

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 690 · Oct. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The Terror's Hide-Out (article)

Notes: This is a rewrite of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 1st series issue 71, which had the same title but was written by John W. Bobin. Another reworking of the original story was published this same month (October 1939) as THE MYSTERY OF THE DOPE DEN in THE BOYS' FRIEND LIBRARY 2nd series issue 691 (see top of this page for that issue and a review based on the original tale).

Rating: ★★★★★


THE MYSTERY OF THE MISSING ENVOY
by Pierre Quiroule (W. W. Sayer)
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 691 · Oct. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE REJUVINATED MILLIONAIRE
by Anthony Skene (George N. Philips)
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 692 · Oct. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 145 (1928).

Unrated


THE RUBBER SMUGGLERS
by G. H. Teed
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 693 · Nov. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: Story features George Marsden Plummer. This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 147 (1928).

Unrated


THE SECRET OF THE GOLDEN HORSE
by Anthony Parsons
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 694 · Nov. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE MYSTERY OF THE MISSING REFUGEE
by Hedley Scott

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 695 · Nov. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); The 'Yard Does it's Stuff (article)

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE GUNBOAT MYSTERY
by J. G. Brandon
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 696 · Nov. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE SECRET OF THE SURGERY
by Warwick Jardine (Francis Warwick)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 697 · Dec. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); Fatal Evidence (article)

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE POLICE STATION MYSTERY
by Rex Hardinge
No cover image as yet

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 698 · Dec. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Unknown

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE GREAT TAXI-CAB RAMP
by John G. Brandon

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 699 · Dec. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); On the Midnight Express (article).

Notes: Story features R. S. V. Purvale.

Unrated


THE FUR RAIDERS
by Gilbert Chester (H. H. Clifford Gibbons)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 2nd series · Issue 700 · Dec. 1939 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Consulting Room Chat (ed.); 'On the Spot' in England (article)

Notes: This is a reprint of THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 2nd series issue 151 (1928).

Unrated



Plus:
THE CASE OF THE RANCHER EARL
by Anon. (Unknown)

Illustrator: None

Notes: This is reprinted from THE SEXTON BLAKE ANNUAL 1938.

Unrated


THE TRAIL OF THE MISSING MILLION (Part 1)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)

WILD WEST · Vol.2 Issue 48 · 4/2/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Gun-Runners on the Ranges (strip); Screever's Light Camelry by Anon.; Old Si and Young Jed by Anon.; Rory's Greybeard Army by Anon.; Hop-Talk's Rodeo Rag by Anon.; Rod Mason's Round-the-World Trail by E. R. Home-Gall; Nine-Lives Catling Takes Command by Anon.

Notes: After returning from his service in the great war, young Roger Quintin lived the high life and amounted a number of debts. Deciding to settle down, he approaches his millionaire father to ask for help. The old man refuses. That night, Roger gives into temptation and opens his father's safe to look at the fortune within. He is interrupted by his crafty cousins, Hugh and Sydney Crale. A struggle ensues during which he is momentarily knocked unconscious. When he recovers, Sydney is lying dead at his feet and Hugh is calling for help. The room is suddenly plunged into darkness and Roger is assisted to escape by Parker, the butler. Grabbing one of his father's uniquely marked Colt revolvers from its place on the wall, the young man flees into the night. Twenty years later, an American gangster named Smiler Macguire receives a letter from Hugh. Old man Quintin has died and has stipulated in his will that Roger, who is believed to be in the States, must be found. If he is, and he can clear himself of a murder charge, he will inherit a fortune. If not, the money will go to Hugh Crale. Sexton Blake has taken on the task of finding the man. Crale commissions Smiler to get to Roger first — and kill him — and to block Blake's investigation. Meanwhile, out west, in the town of Red Butte, Colorado, Kit Halsam, who is secretly The Phantom Sheriff, is rescued from bandits by a reclusive prospector who then flees. Few people know anything about the prospector; only that he receives a letter once a month at the Red Butte post office. Halsam journeys to New York where the only man who knows his secret identity, police officer Benny Goodfellow, informs him of Blake's mission. He reveals that the underworld has taken an interest in the Quintin affair and intends to murder the detective to prevent him from finding Roger first. The Phantom Sheriff, says Goodfellow, must protect Blake. As they go to meet the English detective at the docks, they are shot at by gangsters. Sexton Blake steps off the liner and is met by criminals. He willingly steps into their trap.

Trivia: Tinker does not appear in this story as he is in hospital for an unspecified reason.

Rating: ★★★☆☆


THE TRAIL OF THE MISSING MILLION (Part 2)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)

WILD WEST · Vol.2 Issue 49 · 11/2/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Stick to the Old 'Uns by Anon.; Screever's Dry-Land Destroyer by Anon.; Old Si and Young Jed by Anon.; Redskin Russell by Anon.; Pards o' the Open Road by Anon.; Was His Dad an Outlaw by Anon.; Rod Mason's Round-the-World Trail by E. R. Home-Gall; Half-Pint Cowboy by Anon.

Notes: Sexton Blake is taken to a garage where Smiler Macguire has him placed into a booby-trapped noose. When the detective tires of holding up a heavy iron bar and lowers his arms, the noose will tighten around his neck until he is asphixiated. Incendiary devices will also be triggered. For hours the detective stands, struggling to keep the bar held high. Then he sees a risky way of breaking free. His plan works but sets off the firebombs. The garage bursts into flames and Blake discovers that he is trapped inside. Meanwhile, Kit Halsam and Goodfellow have survived the attack on their car. Halsam leaps unseen onto the back of the gangsters' car as it veers away and thus finds his way to the garage. After the villains have departed he sees the building start to burn and, in the guise of The Phantom Sheriff, is able to rescue Blake before disappearing. The detective brings with him a notebook left by Smiler and learns from it that the gangster boss is heading to Red Butte in Clorado. Goodfellow introduces Blake to Halsam who agrees to fly them to the town. Meanwhile, at their destination, the old prospector receives another letter. In the hills, on his own, his stance straightens up — he isn't an old man at all; he is Roger Quintin in disguise. The letter is from Parker and reveals that the butler is on his way to America and will travel under the assumed name of Cyril Murgatroyd.

Rating: ★★★☆☆


THE TRAIL OF THE MISSING MILLION (Part 3)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)

WILD WEST · Vol.2 Issue 50 · 18/2/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Old Si and Young Jed by Anon.; Bee-Ware, Mister Screever by Anon.; Skin Russell by Anon.; Was His Dad an Outlaw by Anon.; Rod Mason's Round-the-World Trail by E. R. Home-Gall; Pards o' the Open Road by Anon.; A Mountie's Cure for Klondyke Crooks by Anon.; Smiler's Mammoth Production by Anon.

Notes: Smiler Macguire's mob set a trap on the airfield outside Red Butte and, when a plane crash lands, they pull two men from the wreckage and rush them to their boss's headquarters. Smiler is in discussion with Hugh Crale who, when the prisoners are heard arriving, locks himself away in the next room. Smiler is dismayed to find that the captives are not Sexton Blake and his pilot as expected but two strangers. One of them, an old man, introduces himself as Cyril Murgatroyd. The criminal boss sends them away in disgust. But when Crale emerges he tells Smiler that he recognised his old butler, Parker, who has obviously arrived to find Roger Quintin. Meanwhile, Blake and Halsam arrive in Red Butte and begin to suspect that the old prospector might be their quarry. After the detective narrowly avoids being blown up by a parcel bomb he acquires a 'body guard' named Sandy Hicks. Halsam tells Blake that he is departing for his ranch but, in fact, he adopts his secret Phantom Sheriff identity and sureptitiously follows the detective. Both men fall into a trap and find themselves at the bottom of a pit with another prisoner — Parker. The butler reveals that Quintin, the prospector, is using the name Simon Quayle and that Crale is in the town. The conversation is interrupted by their unseen captor who releases a door which diverts a nearby stream into the pit. Blake, Halsam and Parker will drown! This serial was continued in THE THRILLER issue 525.

Rating: ★★★☆☆


THE TRAIL OF THE MISSING MILLION (Part 4)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)

THE THRILLER · Vol.20 Issue 525 · 25/2/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: A Crook in Armour by Berkeley Gray; Old Si and Young Jed by Anon.; The Floating Prison by Gaston Leroux.

Notes: The first three parts of this serial were published in WILD WEST issues 48, 49 and 50 (see above). When that paper amalgamated with THE THRILLER, the serial continued. Blake, Parker and The Phantom Sheriff tread water as the pit floods. The English detective climbs the side of the pit and releases the barrier at the top. He lowers a rope to his companions. The Sheriff is concerned that, with his waterlogged face mask slipping, his true identity will be exposed. So as he climbs out he punches Blake unconscious then runs off into the night. Parker cannot revive Blake and races off for help. He encounters his master, Roger Quintin, who instructs him to take a train to New York and to write to Blake from there to inform him that Quintin is in the city. The fugitive hopes that this diversion will keep those hunting him away for a vital six months ...

Rating: ★★★☆☆


THE TRAIL OF THE MISSING MILLION (Part 5)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)

THE THRILLER · Vol.20Issue 526 · 4/3/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Plan 17 by D. L. Ames; Old Si and Young Jed by Anon.; The Floating Prison by Gaston Leroux.

Notes: Blake is revived by Kit Halsam and Sandy Hicks. He instructs Hicks to dress up as Simon Quayle in order to set a trap for the enemy. Smiler Macguire, meanwhile, is torturing Red Butte's post office clerk for information about the old prospector. One of his mob arrives and tells him that he has spotted their quarry. The villains race off and capture Quayle (who is actually Hicks). They take him back to their ranch with Blake and The Phantom Sheriff shadowing behind. As the two heroes prepare a diversion to enable their entry into the enemy base, Blake pierces the Sheriff's disguise and realises that he's Kit Halsam.

Rating: ★★★☆☆


THE TRAIL OF THE MISSING MILLION (Part 6)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)

THE THRILLER · Vol.20 Issue 527 · 11/3/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Crime Marches On by Berkeley Gray; Old Si and Young Jed by Anon.; The Floating Prison by Gaston Leroux.

Notes: Sexton Blake and The Phantom Sheriff rush the house and see, through a window, Hugh Crale and Smiler Macguire with their prisoner, the disguised Sandy Hicks. When the two lawmen are cornered by four of Smiler's mobsters, they trick the gang boss into shooting his own men. They then hold their enemies at gunpoint. Crale reveals that Hicks possesses a scar which identifies him as the real Roger Quintin. Blake is amazed by the fact that he had unknowingly asked Roger Quintin to impersonate himself! Suddenly all the men present collapse after Crale breaks open a vial of gas. Holding his breath, the dastardly Englishman pulls his cousin, Quintin, from the room and, taking a car, drives away having first set fire to the building. When Quintin recovers, Crale questions him about the Colt pistol he had brought with him to America. Inside it, he reveals, is a key to his father's treasure. But Quintin claims to have sold the weapon many years ago. The prisoner breaks free and knocks the villain senseless. He then returns to the burning house and pulls a figure from the flames. It's Smiler! he rushes back in to find Blake and The Phantom Sheriff ...

Rating: ★★★☆☆


THE TRAIL OF THE MISSING MILLION (Part 7)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)

THE THRILLER · Vol.20 Issue 528 · 18/3/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Curtains for Mr. X by Walter Edwards; Old Si and Young Jed by Anon.

Notes: Roger Quintin pulls Blake free of the burning house. He then rushes back in and finds Kit Haslam. Not realising that the latter is also The Phantom Sheriff, he re-enters the building to search for the lawman. Overcome by smoke, he passes out and when he recovers finds himself tied up in the back of a car driven by Smiler Macguire. The gangster boss takes him to another hideaway where he proceeds to torture him for the whereabouts of the Colt revolver. Quintin refuses to talk. One of Smiler's last surviving men arrives and tells him that Parker has been captured at the railway station. When the old butler is threatened with torture, Quintin cracks and reveals that the pistol is hidden back at his hotel. Meanwhile, Blake deduces that the criminals will probably search the hotel and tricks Hugh Crale into going there... straight into his trap!

Rating: ★★★☆☆


THE TRAIL OF THE MISSING MILLION (Part 8)
by Anon. (Edward Holmes)

THE THRILLER · Vol.20 Issue 529 · 25/3/1939 · Amalgamated Press · 2d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: One by One They Vanish by L. C. Douthwaite; Old Si and Young Jed by Anon.

Notes: Sexton Blake and The Phantom Sheriff find Roger Quintin and Parker tied up in an isolated shack. Quintin tells the detective and lawman that he has been waiting for the twenty-year limit to end which would mean he could not be arrested for the murder of Sydney Crale. There's just half a year left to go. He also tells the full story of the night of the murder. Blake reveals to him that Sydney had been strangled from behind... which suggests that Quintin was not the killer. That evening, Hugh Crale breaks into the closed hotel and finds Kit Halsam searching the office. Halsam spins a yarn about being broke and wanting the key to millions which he's heard is hidden in a Colt revolver somewhere in the hotel. He tells Crale that he's found evidence that the sly Englishman was the murderer of his cousin Sydney and suggests they work together to get the money. Crale falls for the trap and admits to the killing. Realising that he is cornered, he pulls a gun and shoots at Halsam. A shot rings out and Crale collapses, wounded. Sexton Blake emerges from hiding, a smoking gun in his hand. Smiler Macguire and his remaining men arrive and break in to search the premises. They trigger a booby trap left by Blake and are all overcome by gas. The Colt is recovered and given to Quintin who, with Parker, accompanies Blake on the voyage back to England. Crale commits suicide in gaol, leaving a signed confession.

Rating: ★★★☆☆