Sexton Blake Bibliography: 1957

Publishing: In the wake of the Hank Janson trials, and in the build up to the passing of the Obscene Publications Act, W. Howard Baker is advised by the board at Amalgamated Press to tone down the sex and violence in the SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY. This directly affects his own Blake novel, SCANDAL STREET, which is being billed as "the story that never made the headlines." It is hurriedly withdrawn from the schedule. HOMICIDE BLUES is rushed into print to take its place. This same crisis also resulted in a complete revision of PANIC IN THE NIGHT. This was originally a James Stagg novel about black magic but it was withdrawn and, into the cover originally designed for it, was placed a completely different tale by Jacques Pendower. (Baker later revised SCANDAL STREET to make it a non-Blake novel and it was eventually published as a Consul Paperback by World Distributors.)

HOMICIDE BLUES is also notable for the apparent introduction of a new author: Desmond Reid. In fact, there is no such person. It is a 'house name' used whenever a submission is heavily revised by the editor (as many were) or when an author's name appeared too often in too short a period.

A new author who does exist appears in the shape of Martin Thomas (real name Thomas Martin) who, while popular with the readers, would also become rather vocal in his criticism of fans who yearned for the good old days of Baker Street and super-villains.

In November, the names of the cover artists begin to appear in the issues for the first time since the New Order began. For the past 40 years covers had been painted by either Arthur Jones, H. M. Lewis or Eric Parker; over the next five years, at least 21 artists would contribute, among them: F. N. Carcupino, Caroselli, Frank Daniel, De Gaspari, De Seta, Favelli, Fratini, Bodolfo Gasbarri, W. S. Greenhalgh, Margaret Higgins, Jacoby, Lionel Morgan, Olivetti, Hugo Pratt, Putzu, Sandri, Simbori, Marcus Stone, Symeoni, Malcom Tompkins, and Dabid Wright. Just two New Order covers were painted by Eric Parker (old artwork re-used). Internal illustrations were by James Cawthorne, Noel Cooke, Frank Daniel, Jack Dunkley, Bert Forbes, R. E. Forrest, D. J. Gold, Margaret Higgins, A. Horowicz, Anton Locke, Eric Parker, E. Ratcliffe and Bill Ward.

Blake: Huxton Rymer reappears to challenge Blake again ... or is it his son?

THE CASE OF THE HIDDEN TREASURE
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 932 · 05/01/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE URANIUM-MAKER
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 933 · 12/01/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sir Adrian Beverly discovers that Doctor Zilensky has perfected a way to manufacture pure uranium. He has challenged Zilensky to prove his formula in front of Sexton Blake — and if he does so, he will receive ten thousand pounds in return for his guarantee that he'll never reveal the secret. Beverly prepares the ingredients in time for Zilensky's arrival. When the Doctor makes his appearance, he lights a cigar and proceeds with the experiment ... which seems to succeed. However, Blake spots that there's a scam occurring and exposes the doctor's trickery.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE NIGHT WATCHMEN 'TECS
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 934 · 19/01/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Boyd Nolan, an ex-crook and one-time King of the Underworld, calls Sexton Blake round to his house and shows him a glass-fronted cabinet in his strong-room. He keeps his treasures in this, protected by the armour-plated glass. Nolan is going away for the night and asks the detective to stand guard while he's gone. Blake, who dislikes the ex-criminal, agrees but charges a fee of one thousand pounds. During the night, frequent checks through the strong-room door's peep-hole reveal that the cabinet is intact but, when Nolan returns in the morning and unlocks the door, the cabinet is empty. He is furious and threatens to tell Scotland yard, ensuring that Blake will never work again. However, the detective notes that Tinker's fingerprints, which had been on the armoured-glass, have vanished. This reveals to him the nature of the trick that has been played and Nolan is arrested for his attempt at insurance fraud.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF PANTO PETE'S PORK PIE
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 935 · 26/01/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF MAZUMI'S WARNING
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 936 · 02/02/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF MIDNIGHT MIKE'S ALIBI
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 937 · 09/02/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: The mansion of the Duke of Mortland is burgled by an accomplished crook known as Midnight Mike. His activities are interrupted by the forced landing of a military aircraft nearby but he thinks this will be to his advantage as it will distract the locals. The next morning Mike is questioned by Sexton Blake and Inspector Coutts but supplies an alibi which seems solid. Upon leaving Scotland Yard, Blake and Tinker have to push Mike's car out of the way as it is blocking their own. Blake notices oil on his hands after doing this. Upon arrival at Mortland Manor, the clues fall into place and the detective is able to prove Mike's alibi false.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE NIGHT ATTACK
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 938 · 16/02/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF DANNY THE DIP
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 939 · 23/02/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 3d

Illustrator: Anon. (Mike Western)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sexton Blake sees Danny the Dip, a pickpocket recently released from prison, and follows him to a model plane rally. Plane no.19 seems to lose control and heads towards the sea. Blake and Tinker, together with the plane's strangely reluctant owner, pursue it in the detective's car and then, as it flies out over the water, in a boat. They see men in a a cruiser ahead retrieve the model but when they arrive at the vessel they receive a hostile reception. Blake reveals that recently stolen diamonds are concealed in the plane, put there by Danny the Dip.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE STOLEN SCHOOLBOY
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 940 · 02/03/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Angus Brennan, the young son of a wealthy Scottish couple, is a motor-car enthusiast. When he sees a man struggling to open the bonnet of an unusual car, he gives a helping hand. However, the engine is at the back of the car and, under the bonnet, a man is concealed. He grabs Angus and the boy is driven away by his kidnappers. His parents call in Sexton Blake and show him the ransom letter they have received. Written by their son, it informs them that the kidnappers want £5,000. The note ends with a "P.S." but no actual postscript. This gives Blake a clue and he and Tinker rush to a nearby airfield where they hire an amphibious airplane and fly to the Shetland Isles. There they find the two men, make their arrests, and free the captive boy. Blake reveals how the "P.S." put him on to the criminals' trail.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE SCENTED FORGERIES
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 941 · 09/03/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Forged petrol coupons are flooding the country and Inspector Coutts is baffled. When a packet of freshly printed coupons is found dropped in the street, he takes it to Sexton Blake. The detective notices that the coupons have a distinctive scent ... a fact which also attracts Pedro's attention. The bloodhound rummages around in Blake's fishing tackle, paying particular attention to a basket the detective had recently used on a trip to the River Runwell. Taking the hint, Blake charters a small plane and he, Tinker and Coutts fly north to the river, following its course until they spot an isolated house. They land and approach the building which proves to be the base of the forgers' operations. The criminals flee in a car but, ironically, it runs out of petrol. They are caught and arrested.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE CRAFTSMAN CROOK
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 942 · 16/03/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Charlie Moore is an elderly burglar who plans his crimes in great detail. He is a master craftsman and, for his next burglary, has made a key to fit a jeweller's safe. One night, he lets himself into the jeweller's premises and empties the safe of gems. However, upon leaving, Charlie climbs over a fence, tears his coat and loses his watch. The following morning, this item of evidence is shown to Sexton Blake by Inspector Coutts. Blake notes that it has been repaired by its owner and tracks down the shop where the new parts of the mechanism were sold. The shopkeeper remembers who purchased the parts ... which is bad news for Charlie Moore.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE UNLUCKY EMERALDS
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 943 · 23/03/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sexton Blake is asked by Inspector Coutts to help bring to book a man named Ezra Skinner, who is suspected of stealing an emerald necklace. Coutts wants Skinner's house searched but cannot do the job himself due to the lack of a legal warrant. That night, Blake and Tinker drive to the house and see, through the window, Skinner watching his television. Near his armchair is his desk, which the detective wants to examine. So Blake disconnects the crook's TV arial and Skinner responds by rushing out of the house to a nearby call-box where he telephones for a TV repairman. Meanwhile, Blake finds the emerald necklace in the desk drawer. When Skinner returns, he finds himself under arrest.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE SWITCHED HORSES
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 944 · 30/03/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE APRIL FOOL CROOK
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 945 · 06/04/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: On April Fool's Day, Mr. Dawson, the head of a small firm dealing with hire-purchase payments, finds himself the victim of a number of strange jokes: five taxi drivers turn up at his house, making him late for work, and his staff turn up even later after receiving a telegram, apparently from him, instructing them to do so. Puzzled, he calls Sexton Blake. The detective discovers that five payment envelopes which should have been delivered that morning are missing. He telephones Inspector Coutts and asks whether a cash robbery has been committed during the night. Upon receiving an affirmative answer, Blake visits the home of Pemberton, who was recently sacked from Mr. Dawson's firm. He finds him with the stolen money. Blake explains what led him to the crook.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE BURGLARY TEST
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 946 · 13/04/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE EASTER PLOT
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 947 · 20/04/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE TIME-BOMB PLOT
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 948 · 27/04/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF SPARKLER KIDD'S REVENGE
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 949 · 04/05/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE ESSEX GYPSY
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 950 · 11/05/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE MAN OVERBOARD
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 951 · 18/05/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE GUARDED HOUSE
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 952 · 25/05/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE BIG HAUL
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 953 · 01/06/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE BLACK PEARLS
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 954 · 08/06/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE OVERHEAD EYE
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 955 · 15/06/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE BANK BLACKMAILER
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 956 · 22/06/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE OLD MAN'S MONEY
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 957 · 29/06/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE SEA TIGER
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 958 · 06/07/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sexton Blake and Tinker are invited by the Navy to witness the demonstration of a new device. Aboard an experimental ship, an Admiral shows them a small mechanical brain which can detect submarines and guide a missile. The demonstration proceeds, with Blake, Tinker and four photographers looking on. The missile launcher — nicknamed the "Sea Tiger" — swivels around until it detects a nearby submarine. The dummy missile fires, circles and plunges into the sea, hitting its target. Afterwards, there is a sudden commotion; the Admiral has discovered that the mechanical brain he showed Blake has been stolen. The detective immediately identifies one of the cameramen as the thief. He then explains how he knew the man was responsible.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE AUCTION MYSTERY
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 959 · 13/07/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE COWBOY HAT
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 960 · 20/07/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE TUBE-TRAIN MYSTERY
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 961 · 27/07/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sexton Blake receives a call from Inspector Coutts — Mario Torelli has been knifed in the back on a tube train at rush hour and is not expected to survive. Blake suspects Tony Milton, who has recently been released from jail after serving a sentence thanks to Milton's testimony. Milton's alibi — that he was at the barber's — seems watertight ... but Sexton Blake is able to spot the flaw in it and proves that Milton was the knifeman.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE TOO-SLICK CROOK
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 962 · 03/08/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Inventor Micheal Marlow has purchased a country cottage so he can work on a new engine design in peace. However, he finds himself being constantly disturbed by a low-flying monoplane piloted by his neighbour, Adrian Ingham. One day he argues with Ingham and, upon returning to his house, finds that the blueprints for his invention have been stolen. He calls Sexton Blake. The detective questions Ingham in his aircraft hanger before suddenly asking him whether he can loan Tinker a brush and comb. Ingham protests that he has no such objects in his hanger. However, Blake's odd question was not without purpose and he is able to expose Ingham as the crook.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE "LUCKY" STONES
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 963 · 10/08/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: A child named Timothy Holliday is collecting stones on a beach near his home when he is kidnapped by men in a helicopter. When the aircraft lands on another beach farther down the coast, Timothy tries to escape by throwing his stones into the face of Darby, one of the abductors. He is thrown over Darby's shoulder and carried to an isolated house while the other man flies away in the 'copter. Next morning, Timothy's father calls Sexton Blake, who arrives with Tinker and Pedro. They search along the coast and eventually draw near to the kidnapper's house. Pedro finds the stones which still bear Timothy's scent. Blake visits the house and rescues the lad.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE TIRED WATCHMAN
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 964 · 17/08/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Lewis Dane arrives at his new factory one morning and sees a hole burned through the metal shutters. Inside, he discovers that the safe has been emptied. He rouses Radford, the night watchman, who is asleep in his caravan and sacks him. He then telephones Sexton Blake. The detective questions Radford who reveals that he'd had a headache the night before, took some aspirin and had fallen into a deep sleep. After answering Blake's questions, he packs up his caravan to leave. Tinker helps and notices that a gas canister is unusually heavy. This alerts Blake and he searches the caravan, finding the stolen money and metal-cutting equipment. He reveals how the gas canister gave Radford's game away.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE ESCAPE ROUTE
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 965 · 24/08/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: A car thief in Devon is mystifying the police with his ability to suddenly vanish. Major Heddon, the Police Commissioner, fears that his car is typical of the sort favoured by the thief, so Blake removes its suppressor. He, Tinker and Heddon then go indoors to watch television. When, after some time, interference distorts the picture, Blake knows that the car has been started. He and Tinker rush outside and pursue the fleeing vehicle but after a number of bends in the road, it disappears. However, the detective spots a clue and is able to expose the thief's trick.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE PERFORMING DOGS
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 966 · 31/08/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: For his daughter's birthday party, Colonel Whitby advertises for an entertainer and receives a reply from "Peter Punch and his Performing Poodles". The man is hired and, that evening, puts his dogs through their paces to the delight of the children. However, during the act, a gold candlestick goes missing. The Colonel calls Sexton Blake and the detective notices dog hair on the carpet near where the candlestick had stood. When "Peter Punch" leaves, Blake and Tinker follow at a discreet distance. The dog trainer arrives home but the detectives beat him to his front door and find inside the house a terrier waiting with the candlestick between its paws. Sexton Blake explains how the loot was stolen.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE INSIDE INFORMATION
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 967 · 07/09/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: A diamond dealer named Petersen has experienced a number of thefts — always occurring when there's something particularly valuable in the safe. He calls Sexton Blake and explains that only his old assistant, Timothy Frayle, has knowledge of the safe's contents. However, he tested Frayle by giving him inside information before then staying with him throughout the night. In the morning, the safe had been burgled, so Frayle could not have committed the crime. Blake, though, discovers that the information is being passed on in a very cunning manner ... and Frayle and his accomplice are exposed.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE GUNMAN CROOK
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 968 · 14/09/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE ETNA EMERALD
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 969 · 21/09/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE OLD LADY'S PET
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 970 · 28/09/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE UNRIDDEN BIKE
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 971 · 05/10/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sexton Blake and Tinker are walking in the countryside when they encounter Denis Thurber, the caretaker at the mansion belonging to Mrs Van Hogan. He is half-dressed and comes crawling out of a bush near which a wrecked bicycle lays. He explains that it belongs to his employer's son and he had used it to chase a burglar he had disturbed during the night. The crook had got into a car and used it to run Thurber down. Blake examines the bicycle but is interrupted by the return of Mr and Mrs Van Thurbar. The detective explains that their jewels have been stolen but assures them that he can identify the thief ... it's Thurbar! He goes on to reveal the clues that gave the crook away.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE ESCAPED CONVICT
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 972 · 12/10/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE VITAL SPARK
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 973 · 19/10/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE AIRPORT CLUE
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 974 · 26/10/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Simon Penfold returns from an expedition to Tibet without his companion but with a heart disease which is treated by a weekly dose of a drug given to him by his Tibetan rescuers. He keeps the drug in his safe but one day finds it empty but for a note. It is from his lost companion, John Hilbert, and informs him that the drugs have been stolen as vengeance; Hilbert believes Penfold deliberately left him to die in the mountains. Penfold calls in Sexton Blake and explains his innocence. Hilbert has witnessed Blake's arrival and now telephones to give him a clue: the drugs are on a plane which is off the ground but not flying. Blake and Tinker go to nearby London Airport and the detective discovers the hiding place and the drugs. Penfold is saved and, a few days later, reunited with a penitent Hilbert.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE SHOCKED MAN
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 975 · 02/11/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE GUY FAWKES CROOK
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 976 · 09/11/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE WRONG REGIMENT
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 977 · 16/11/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE INNOCENT FORGER
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 978 · 23/11/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE 5.10PM TRAIN
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 979 · 30/11/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE "GOLDEN HIND"
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 980 · 07/12/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Millionaire Marcus Raymond has carved a perfect scale model replica of the Golden Hind — in solid gold! Inspector Coutts is concerned that it will be stolen ... and, sure enough, it is. Raymond is found unconscious with the words "Try phones" scrawled on the wall beside him. The owner of a nearby garage says two men stopped for petrol and said they were heading to Scotland. Coutts pursues this lead but Blake is more interested in a pair of headphones attached to a device in Raymond's workshop. Through these he hears a signal — the millionaire had put a tracking device in the Golden Hind! Blake follows the signal and catches the crooks.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE SECRET HIDE-OUT
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 981 · 14/12/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE CHRISTMAS MONEY
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 982 · 21/12/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE WALKING SNOWMAN
by Anon. (See note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 983 · 28/12/1957 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


KNOCKOUT ANNUAL 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 7/6

Other content: Tinker's 'Tec Teasers; various strips and text stories.

Trivia: KNOCKOUT FUN BOOK changes its name to KNOCKOUT ANNUAL and offers a greater variety of Sexton Blake material: two strips, a text story and Tinker's 'Tec Teasers.

Containing:
THE CASE OF THE KIDNAPPED ATHLETE
by Anon. (Unknown)

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Notes: This is an illustrated text story. Chris Wainright, a cashier at the Skyslider Aircraft factory and a champion long-distance runner, turns up at Baker Street in a bedraggled state. He explains to Sexton Blake that he was kidnapped during a marathon, replaced by an imposter, and held prisoner in a cave for three days. After managing to escape, he had returned home only to discover that he is wanted by the police for the theft of the factory workers' wages. He protests his innocence but the only evidence of his story that he can provide is the old suit his kidnappers had given him for warmth. Blake examines this and is able to form a picture of its original owner. He visits the aircraft factory and there spots his man — the owner of the suit. The detective visits this man's home and there finds Wainwright's double and the stolen money.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

THE CASE OF THE CRACKSMAN'S ALIBI
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Notes: A cracked safe bears all the hallmarks of Peter the Blower but, as Inspector Coutts points out, the explosion that blew open the safe also stopped a clock at four o'clock — at which time Peter was photographed feeding pigeons outside Victoria Station. Sexton Blake visits Peter who has with him the photographer who took the picture. When a pigeon lands on the windowsill, Blake has a flash of inspiration — the alibi is false! The two crooks attempt to flee but are captured. Blake explains to Tinker how the photographic evidence was faked.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

THE CASE OF THE TORRELLI TWINS
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)

Illustrator: Anon. (Alfred Taylor)

Notes: A cracked safe bears the hallmarks of the Torrelli twins — but which one committed the crime? As Inspector Coutts observes, they have worked separately for years. The only evidence they have is the number plate of the getaway car — a car which, even as they speak, is hit by the Northburgh Express train! No bodies are found among the wreckage. When Sexton Blake arrives at the scene the train has continued its journey. He realises that the accident was a set-up and one of the Torrellis is on the train. From a nearby RAF base, he borrows a plane and flies to Northburgh, arriving before the train. Torrelli spots him at the station and flees but Blake and Tinker give chase and catch him.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


NIGHTMARE IN NAPLES
by James Stagg

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 373 · Jan. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: Blake and Paula Dane are on holiday near Naples when the corpse of a young girl is washed ashore. A victim of a stabbing, she's identified as Gina Salvari, the daughter of Count Salvari, a local dignitary. The next day, Blake is tricked into meeting one-time gangster Primo Contini, the police's top suspect. Contini wants Blake to investigate and to prove his innocence, as Contini has been going straight these past few years and feels that the police are acting on an old grudge. The detective learns that Salvari's latest boyfriend was Pietro Mazzini, the son of a rich factory owner. The names Rudolfo Granzi and Pasquale Petronacci also come to his attention, the two men having frequently been seen in her company. That night, Blake's hotel room is ransacked and the criminologist is knocked unconscious. Meanwhile, Paula enters her room and finds herself facing a gun-toting woman named Bianca d'Augusta. Paula, however, is not to be messed with. She overpowers d'Augusta, ties her up, then fetches the now recovering Blake. Questioned, d'Augusta says she was sent by Mazzini, to whom she is betrothed, to see if the detective had made any progress, as Mazzini is innocent of Salvari's murder, though also suspected. Before Blake can get any further information from her, d'Augusta runs away and is picked up by a waiting car. Blake and Paula visit Mazzini's apartment and find him stabbed to death. Blake pockets a slip of paper on which figures and place names have been jotted. Back at his hotel, he receives a message from d'Augusta requesting that he call her. He does so but there’s no response. Getting her address from the exchange, he hurries to her lodgings where he finds her dead. Next, he pays a visit to Petronacci who expresses the opinion that Rudolfo Granzi murdered Salvari in a jealous rage. So Blake goes to Granzi’s villa to question him ... and three days later wakes up in hospital. Paula had found him unconscious in his car with a girl of ill repute dead at his side. Of Granzi, there is no sign. While recovering, Blake learns that a fisherman has been stabbed in an apparent brawl. Paula discovers that the victim was another of Gina Salvari’s lovers. A few days pass before Blake is released from hospital. By then, he's realised that the piece of paper he found in Mazzini's apartment is a list of times and places where Petronacci has smuggled cigarettes brought ashore. He and Paula keep vigil at the next assignation point and there witness Petronacci's men surviving an attack by a gang of men. When the fighting is done, the two groups depart, leaving a dying man behind. It is Granzi. While Blake stays with him, Paula is abducted by Petronacci. The detective sets out to find her but he, too, is captured and is driven to the Vesuvius volcano. There, he breaks free and rescues Paula before pursuing Petronacci's boss to the very lip of the volcano. There, with his identity revealed, the man tells a tragic tale, confesses to all the murders, and commits suicide by jumping into the Vesuvius crater.

Trivia: Not even a mention of Tinker in this issue!

Rating: ★★☆☆☆


THE SEASON OF THE SKYLARK
by Jack Trevor Story

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 374 · Jan. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: This was reprinted as a hardback novel in 1970.

Unrated


SILENT WITNESS
by John Hunter

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 375 · Feb. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


MASK OF FURY
by Arthur Maclean (George Paul Mann)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 376 · Feb. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: This was revised and republished as SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY fifth series, novel 12, THE SAVAGE SQUEEZE (1965).

Unrated


PANIC IN THE NIGHT
by James Stagg (A heavily revised version of a story submitted by Jacques Pendower)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 377 · Mar. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


HOMICIDE BLUES
by Desmond Reid (Gordon W. Sowman, with revisions by W. Howard Baker)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 378 · Mar. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


FLASHPOINT FOR TREASON
by Desmond Reid (Brian McArdle, with revisions by George Paul Mann)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 379 · Apr. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: Story features Huxton Rymer.

Unrated



Plus:
THE MILLION POUND STAKES
by James Stagg

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


DEADLINE FOR DANGER
by Arthur Maclean (George Paul Mann)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 380 · Apr. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: Adapted from the story THE CRIMSON FRAME by A. L. Martin, published by Fawcett Gold Medal Books, 1952.

Unrated


SPECIAL EDITION — MURDER
by Arthur Kent

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 381 · May 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


VACATION WITH FEAR
by Jack Trevor Story

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 382 · May 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SHOOT WHEN READY
by W. Howard Baker

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 383 · Jun. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: The inside covers contain stills from the film MEET SEXTON BLAKE.

Unrated


VICTIM UNKNOWN
by Desmond Reid (Lee Roberts, revised by George Paul Mann)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 384 · Jun. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: Adapted from the story LITTLE SISTER by Lee Roberts (Robert Martyn), published by Fawcett Gold Medal Books, 1952. This is recounted in first-person by Sexton Blake. Rich socialite Vivien Prosper asks the detective to end her younger sister's relationship with garage owner, Arthur Spotwood. Before Blake decides whether to take the case, the girl in question, Linda, rolls up in a car. She's drugged to the eyeballs and there's a corpse in the boot. Jerome Pitt, the girls' step-father, makes an attempt to pay Blake off but is unsuccessful. The detective, trying to identify the corpse, follows clues leading to a coffee shop. There he is poisoned. After recovering, he learns that Pitt and Spotwood have an agreement: if the latter marries Linda and gains access to her fortune, he will share it with Pitt. Blake returns to the coffee shop to question the waitress but she is murdered. He finally discovers that the body in the boot is that of Stephen Lapham, an archeology student who was secretly married to Linda. As the web of relationships grows ever more tangled, Blake struggles to make sense of the various motivations, hoping to expose the killer before he or she strikes again.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆ It's always a risky business writing from Blake's perspective ... all too easily, stepping into an extraordinary man's mind reveals only that he's no more remarkable than the imagination of the author. Unfortunately, George Paul Mann, in adapting Lee Robert's story, simply wasn't up to the task of bringing the detective to life.


CORPSE TO COPENHAGEN
by Jonathan Burke (John Burke)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 385 · Jul. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Murder By Gaslight (article)

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


ROADHOUSE GIRL
by Desmond Reid (A. L. Martin, revised by Paul George Mann)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 386 · Jul. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: Adapted from the story FEAR COMES CALLING by A. L. Martin, published by Fawcett Gold Medal Books, 1952. This tale sees the welcome return of Mrs Bardell.

Unrated


MURDER WITH VARIETY
by William Arthur (W. Howard Baker)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 387 · Aug. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


ACT OF VIOLENCE
by Peter Saxon

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 388 · Aug. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


STAND-IN FOR MURDER
by Desmond Reid (Frank Lambe, revised by George Paul Mann)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 389 · Sep. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Murder Unknown (article)

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


FIND ME A KILLER!
by Arthur Maclean (George Paul Mann)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 390 · Sep. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: The inside front cover has a still from the film MEET SEXTON BLAKE. This was reprinted as SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 5th series SLAYING ON THE 16TH FLOOR (1965).

Unrated


PASSPORT TO DANGER
by James Stagg

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 391 · Oct. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: The Lady Killer (article)

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE COPY-CAT KILLINGS
by Martin Thomas (Thomas Martin)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 392 · Oct. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: None

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE VIOLENT HOURS
by Peter Saxon (W. Howard Baker)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 393 · Nov. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: De Seta (cover) and A. Horowicz (interior)

Other content: None

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE BLONDE AND THE BOODLE
by Jack Trevor Story

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 394 · Nov. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Carcupino (cover) and Jack Dunkley (interior)

Other content: None

Notes: When Richard Tarbut enters the bank at the little country town of St. Harping and stands on his head in order to impress the lovely Daphne, a clerk therein, he starts a chain of events destined to have far-reaching, and, in four instances, fatal results. For Tarbut, an author, not only wrote stories of crimes, he committed them as well. The outcome of Tarbut's extraordinary conduct is a most unfortunate marriage, because under her husband's corrupting influence Daphne, normally a decent law abiding young woman, becomes afflicted with the same crooked tendencies. Prompted by Tarbut, she robs the bank of fifty thousand pounds. It is when the banknotes, wrapped as an ordinary brown paper parcel and addressed to a destination in Paris, to be picked up later by the astute Dickie, go astray, that complications set in. These are still further extended when Daphne meets and falls for Jack Yates, the handsome assistant headmaster of St. Harping Secondary Modern School, who turns out to be an even bigger crook than her husband. Feminine interest is strongly represented, not the least interesting character being Lucy Locket, a long-haired, blue-eyed creature. She is the means of bringing Daphne to justice by reason of her tendency for scratching at newly dug earth, thereby presenting the police with a most valuable clue. Yes, Lucy was a cat, but in so being differed little from the rest of the feminine characters introduced, with possibly two exceptions. (Review notes reproduced from THE COLLECTORS' DIGEST vol.11 issue 131).

Trivia: This was reprinted as a hardback novel in 1970.

Rating: ★★★★☆


THE LAST DAYS OF BERLIN
by Peter Saxon (W. Howard Baker)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 395 · Dec. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Frank Daniel (interior)

Other content: None

Notes: During the final days of the Second World War, Sexton Blake is sent to Berlin. Hitler has just committed suicide and the city is overrun by rampaging Russian troops; hardly a single building stands after weeks of savage bombing and what's left of the inhabitants are desperate to leave. The setting could be a scene straight out of Hell and the author describes it in scorching detail. The fact that he carefully researched his material, visiting the ruins and meeting with survivors, is painfully evident. This is a vivid and very disturbing read. Blake is hunting for atomic secrets. Shortly before he died, the Führer handed a case of documents and blueprints to one of his trusted Lieutenants, instructing him to deliver them to Grand Admiral Doenitz, his chosen successor. But the Lieutenant didn't get far before being killed by the Russians. The task passed to his lover, a young woman called Gisela Meyer. Blake must intercept her and retrieve the plans before Doenitz or the Russians get hold of them. This is a solo mission; Tinker doesn't appear ... and though we spend a lot of time with Gisela rather than with the detective, what time we do spend with him is packed with action and we get far more of an insight into his character than is usual for the New Order stories. His bravery is beyond doubt. His speed, strength and determination is phenomenal. But, also, he's afraid. The terrible city, burning around him, seems to push him to his limits and there are a couple of moments where he feels certain that he won't survive. It's fascinating to witness him in this ultra-real environment and despite the fact that he seems to have a disproportionate amount of luck on his side, it still feels more like a record of actual events than a work of imagination.

Trivia: The cover's uncredited artwork is among the best in the New Order series; a superb illustration of two German soldiers firing artillery with Berlin behind them in the grip of an inferno, it's dramatic, emotive and very eye-catching indeed.

Rating: ★★★★★ There's much to recommend this but the absolute highlight has to be a flashback covering the final hours of Hitler's life. Events are recounted with conviction, always staying within the bounds of what is known as fact. There's also a gripping chase through the sewers, some blazing gun battles, a twisted torturer and a lot of very narrow escapes. It's tremendous fun!


WALK IN FEAR
by W. Howard Baker

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 396 · Dec. 1957 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: De Seta (cover) and Jack Dunkley (interior)

Other content: None

Notes: This was rewritten as SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY 5th series novel 22 as EVERY MAN AN ENEMY (1966).

Unrated