Sexton Blake Bibliography: 1959

Publishing: In July, the SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY raises its price from 10d to 1'-. No issues are published in August. From issue 435 Sexton Blake ceases to be a product of Amalgamated Press; the company transforms into Fleetway Publications.

Rex Dolphin (1915-1990) makes his debut as a Blake writer.

The KNOCKOUT strips hit rock bottom from the issue dated 29/08/1959 which introduces Sexton Blake as a Scotland Yard detective rather than in his usual role as an independent consulting detective.

THE CASE OF THE NEW YEAR PLOT
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,036 · 03/01/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Frank Pashley)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE HIDDEN WEAPON
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,037 · 10/01/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (George Parlett)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE BOY WHO DIDN'T LOOK
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,038 · 17/01/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE HIGHWAY ROBBERY
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,039 · 24/01/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (W. Bryce Hamiltont)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE CLUE IN THE STOLEN CAR
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,040 · 31/01/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (George Parlett)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE CARRIER OF SECRETS
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,041 · 07/02/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE PAPER BOY'S PENCIL
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,042 · 14/02/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE FALSE ALARMS
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,043 · 21/02/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE CLUE IN THE WRECKAGE
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,044 · 28/02/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE ANGRY TRAVELLER
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,045 · 07/03/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE INNOCENT PRISONER
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,046 · 14/03/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: A young woman named Diana Fraser escapes from prison and visits Sexton Blake at his Baker Street home. She had been convicted for stealing money from the firm she worked for. She has a photograph that she says proves her innocent as it shows she was nowhere near the office at the time of the theft. Unfortunately, she can't prove when it was taken. Blake takes the snapshot to Scotland Yard's photo laboratory and enlarges it. He then returns to Baker Street with Inspector Coutts. The enlarged photo clearly shows a menu in a window behind Miss Fraser ... and it is dated, thereby proving her innocence.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE EMPEROR DIAMOND
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,047 · 21/03/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: The wife of a diamond cutter named John Brymer receives a call from him. He tells her he'll be home late and she must ensure that the TV is on and a fire lit. However, the Brymers have neither a TV nor a fireplace! Mrs Brymer is so puzzled that she telephones Sexton Blake. He arrives with Tinker and surmises that the diamond cutter has been kidnapped. Later, Inspector Coutts visits Blake at Baker Street and informs him that the famous Emperor Diamond has been stolen. The detective uses the clues offered by Mrs Brymer to trace the thieves to a house near a zoo. He finds and rescues Brymer and the crooks are arrested.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE SHIP OF THE DESERT
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,048 · 28/03/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Dr Collingham, the well-respected head of a public school, has a secret life as an expert safe-cracker, though he never does anything with the jewels and money he steals. One day, after Collingham's death, a letter arrives on his ex-pupil Inspector Coutts's desk. It offers a clue to the location of the stolen loot: Seek out the ship of the desert. Coutts shows the letter to Sexton Blake who eventually identifies Cleopatra's Needle as the hiding place. They find a secret compartment behind a sliding stone and, in it, the treasure. Blake explains how he found it.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE JEWELLER'S SHOP RAID
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,049 · 04/04/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (George Parlett)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Blake, Tinker and Inspector Coutts are just around the corner from a jeweller's shop when it is robbed in a smash-and-grab raid. Tinker drives after the crook — while Blake and Coutts attend the scene of the crime — and soon catches up with him, running him off the road. He calls over a nearby constable but when the crook's vehicle is searched no jewels are found. Meanwhile, back at the shop, Blake asserts that the man Tinker chased is a decoy and exposes the real culprit and his methods.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE WAITING POLICEMAN
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,050 · 11/04/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Mr Dawlish, the head of a finance company, arrives at work one morning to find a policeman waiting for him. He's told that there have been reports of a suspicious character in the area, so, accompanied by the constable, he enters his office and opens the safe to check the contents. As soon as the door is opened, the constable knocks him unconscious and rifles the safe. Inspector Coutts is called and arrives accompanied by Sexton Blake. Through footprints on the linoleum, Blake establishes that Dawlish was preceded into the office by someone he trusted. Tinker then finds the numbers 9.15 scratched into the floor, evidently by the stricken financier. The detective identifies these as a policeman's number and traces them to a particular constable who he learns is on sick leave. He and Tinker visit the man's home where they spot someone climbing in through the window. They capture him as he replaces the police uniform in the wardrobe from which he had stolen it.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


THE CASE OF THE TWINS FROM TASMANIA
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,051 · 18/04/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE MAN WITH £10,000
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,052 · 25/04/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF QUICKIE SILVA'S QUICK ESCAPE
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,053 · 02/05/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE KEY TO THE DIAMONDS
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue 1,054 · 09/05/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE ROBBERY AT DAWN
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 16/05/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE LURKING SHADOW
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 23/05/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE TWENTY CIGARETTES
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 30/05/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE IDOL'S RUBY EYE
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 06/06/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE SAFE IN THE WALL
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 13/06/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE UNFINISHED JOB
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · Undated · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE DISOBEYED SIGNAL
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · Undated · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


THE CASE OF THE THIN MAN CROOK
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 22/08/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 29/08/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Trivia: Sexton Blake is, from this issue forward, portrayed as a Scotland Yard detective rather than as an independent consulting detective.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE UNEXPLODED BOMB
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 05/09/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE PRISON BREAK-OUT
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 12/09/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE SIX MARBLES
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 19/09/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sexton Blake, Tinker and Inspector Coutts drive out to a hospital in Surrey where an old man has been sent after being found injured at the bottom of a roadside drop. His memory is gone and he has nothing on him except six glass marbles. Blake asks for a television to be brought to the patient and tunes it to a cricket match. Suddenly the man's memory returns. He tells them that after he had seen two housebreakers at work they had taken him prisoner and bundled him into their car. They had emptied his pockets of everything but the marbles then had thrown him out of the car and down the steep drop. Blake recognises the crooks from the old man's description and has them arrested. He then explains the significance of the six marbles and the cricket match.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE BOXING-RING CROOK
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 26/09/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Boxer Johnnie King is facing Kid Morelli in a championship fight. The fight is watched by Sexton Blake and Tinker who are disappointed to see King lose. However, Blake is suspicious, thinking that King may have been drugged. He visits Morelli in his changing room and asks to see the fighter's gloves. Morelli resists but is silenced by a solid punch from Tinker. The gloves prove to be smeared with a powerful drug and Morelli is disqualified.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE LADDER CLUE
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 03/10/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Beady Barton robs a café and overturns a gas-ring which, after he has escaped, sets fire to the premises. Sexton Blake and Tinker are passing by when they notice the blaze. They rescue the café owner and are told about the robbery. Meanwhile, Barton poses as a decorator in a nearby building. However, he makes an error which Blake immediately spots and Barton soon finds himself under arrest.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE ESCAPE PLAN
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 10/10/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sexton Blake has Inspector Coutts bring in a suspected car thief named Carlo so he can compare the man's hands to a handprint found on a vehicle. Carlo's hands prove to be much smaller and he is allowed to leave. Coutts wonders why Blake had used a print from a crook who's already in prison. Blake calls all police patrols and asks them to look out for a newly-painted yellow car. One is spotted and pursued. Carlo, behind the wheel, drives the vehicle into the river. Later, at the scene, Blake tracks the crook to his hiding place and captures him. He then explains to Coutts how he knew that Carlo would be in a yellow car.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE TELL-TALE COLOUR
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 17/10/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Binky Barker tries to steal a brief-case of gemstones from a diamond dealer named Kleindorp. He succeeds but not before being splashed with green dye from a spray gun Kleindorp has hidden in the case. Barker makes his getaway and climbs into the back of a lorry where he has the good fortune to find a sailor's uniform. He changes into it. Meanwhile, at Scotland Yard, Inspector Coutts tells Sexton Blake about the robbery. A report comes in that the green-stained clothes have been found in a ditch alongside the London to Portsmouth road. Another arrives revealing that a sailor's uniform has been stolen from a Portsmouth-bound lorry. Blake and Tinker spring into action and go to a mainline train station where sailors are arriving from Portsmouth. Among them, Blake spots Barker, who is given away by his lack of a suntan.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE DAINTON DIAMONDS
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 24/10/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: Sparkler Spenson and his wife, Millie, have come up with a scheme to steal the Dainton Diamonds. While Sir Philip Dainton and his wife are watching TV, Spenson burgles their house and slips away. A few minutes later, Lady Dainton discovers that the diamonds have vanished and calls Sexton Blake. Meanwhile, Spenson returns home and find that while he was out Millie had been to the shops and back to purchase some food. He then spots Blake and Tinker approaching and acts surprised when they enter the house. When asked what he has been doing, he states that he and his wife have been at home all evening. Blake sees the bag of shopping. The crook claims that it was bought in the morning but a block of unmelted ice-cream gives the game away and an arrest quickly follows.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE MONEY IN FLAMES
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 31/10/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: When a fire breaks out in the office of a secondhand-car dealer named Wolf, a pile of money burns. Wolf claims £10,000 in insurance but the insurance broker is suspicious, calls Sexton Blake, and asks him to assess how much the ashes are worth. Blake takes the ashes to a laboratory and is able to extract the remains of the metal strips from the notes. They do not add up to the amount claimed and Wolf is arrested for attempted fraud.

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE FIREWORK PLOT
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 07/11/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE PIRATE GHOST
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 14/11/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE VANISHING SECRETS
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 21/11/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE MAN WITH TWO RAZORS
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 28/11/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE CLUE OF THE RAFFLE TICKET
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 05/12/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE STOLEN GORDONIA
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 12/12/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE FRIGHTENED MAN
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 19/12/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


SEXTON BLAKE OF SCOTLAND YARD: THE CASE OF THE TALKING DOLL
by Anon. (see note, issue 737, 1953)
KNOCKOUT

KNOCKOUT · Issue unnumbered · 26/12/1959 · Amalgamated Press · 4d

Illustrator: Anon. (Ian Kennedy)

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


KNOCKOUT ANNUAL 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 7/6

Other content: Various strips and text stories.

Containing:
THE CASE OF THE RUNAWAY TRAIN
by Anon. (Unknown)

Illustrator: Anon. (George Parlett)

Notes: None at present.

Unrated

THE CASE OF THE VANISHING THIEF
by Anon. (Unknown)

Illustrator: Anon. (George Parlett)

Notes: None at present.

Unrated

THE CASE OF THE DIAMOND SMUGGLERS
by Anon. (Unknown)

Illustrator: Anon. (George Parlett)

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


A CRY IN THE NIGHT!
by Peter Saxon (W. Howard Baker)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 421 · Jan. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Margaret Higgins (interior)

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: This was extensively rewritten as a Richard Quintain novel entitled NO PLACE FOR STRANGERS by W. Howard Baker (Consul Books, 1965, reprinted by Five Star Books, 1972). This rewrite was then included in the First Quintain Omnibus: QUINTAIN STRIKES BACK by Howard Baker Books, 1969.

Trivia: The inside back cover contains pictures of the first pages of the first two Sexton Blake stories ever published: THE MISSING MILLIONAIRE and A CHRISTMAS CRIME.

Unrated


CONSIDER YOUR VERDICT
by Rex Hardinge

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 422 · Jan. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: The Sexton Blake Circle (article), Mail Bag.

Notes: This is a revision of SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY issue 192 THE MYSTERY OF THE DEVIL MASK (1949). The character Max Merlin had appeared in two previous Hardinge tales and had been killed at the end of both! Now he's back again to meet exactly the same kind of death and it's hard not to feel that the author is regurgitating the same old staory over and over ...

Unrated


WITNESS TO MURDER
by Edwin Harrison (Eric Alan Ballard)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 423 · Feb. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Favelli (cover)

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Trivia: The inside back cover contains a map of Blake's Berkeley Square offices (see it here).

Unrated


DRESSED TO KILL
by D. Herbert Hyde (Derek Chambers)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 424 · Feb. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Trivia: The inside back cover contains a map of Blake's Berkeley Square offices (see it here).

Unrated


SHADOW OF A GUN
by Martin Thomas (Thomas Martin)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 425 · Mar. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Carcupino

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: The cover illustration was also used on the Hank Janson paperback novel ECSTASY (published by Roberts and Vinter Ltd, 1960).

By Victor Colby from GOLDEN HOURS issue 1 (1960): SHADOW OF A GUN S.B.L. 425 was Martin Thomas's first for the year. This author is outstanding. His stories are well constructed, charged with suspense and excitement, and imbued with excellent characterisation. The feature which appeals to me most is his splendid sense of humour. This humour is never laboured, but is spontaneous and light-hearted. On page 53 the armed criminal was alarmed: "Instantly his hand dived into his pocket — and not for loose change." Mr Thomas features a very human Tinker. The girl in the car leaned closer to him "so that her Technical Knockout perfume caught Tinker a nasty jab under the heart" (page 25).

Unrated


STOP PRESS — HOMICIDE!
by Rex Dolphin

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 426 · Mar. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Marcus Stone

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


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

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 427 · Apr. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Malcom Tompkins (cover) and Margaret Higgins (interior)

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


TIME FOR MURDER
by James Stagg

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 428 · Apr. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: David Wright

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


INVITATION TO MURDER
by Jack Trevor Story

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 429 · May 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Bodolfo Gasbarri

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: When Janet Masters travels to meet an unknown person for an unknown reason, she never comes back. Her strangled corpse is discovered in a forest and at the subsequent inquest a verdict of murder by a person or persons unknown is passed. Her parents ask Sexton Blake to investigate. While Superintendent Dukelow and Sergeant Hammett blunder about like the heavy-footed policemen they are, Blake searches for Janet's best friend, Rita. Unfortunately, when she turns up, she's dead too. It seems that a serial killer is on the loose. Previous to these two murders, he killed three other girls ... and all his victims have been actresses and models. So Blake sends Paula to begin living the life of a wannabe film star in the hope that it will draw a few suspects into the open. Meanwhile, Tinker goes to interview Janet Masters' boyfriend, a sculptor named Philip Yates, and receives a crack on his head for his trouble. But was his assailant Yates or did someone mistake him for the young artist? As the suspects accumulate, Paula finds herself walking into a very dangerous situation ... it appears that she has inadvertently accepted an invitation to a murder — her own!

Rating: ★★★★★ This is a showcase for Jack Trevor Story's eccentric and humorous style of writing and, as such, shines. Highly recommended.


SAFARI WITH FEAR
by Rex Hardinge

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 430 · May 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Fratini

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: Dan Myer is wandering in the South African veld when he comes across a small rondavel. Settling in for the night, he is awoken and by the light of a match sees a terrifying blood-stained figure. But when he strikes a second match, there is no-one there. Myer realises that the doors are still locked. How did the person get in and where have they gone? The third match reveals a pool of blood on the floor, sending Myer running into the night in wild panic. He eventually encounters Sexton Blake, Tinker and Paula Dane who, holidaying in the region, are driving from a late-night visit to a friend. They return to the rondavel with him and find that its floor has been freshly cleaned; the blood scrubbed off. Their investigation is interrupted by Blake's friend Wallace, who arrives on the scene to report a murder back at the plantation: the owner, Landon Ward, has been horribly hacked to death. This news sends a fear-stricken Myer racing into the night. Tinker sets off in pursuit while the rest head for the plantation to meet with the local police chief, O'Malley. Later, Tinker returns to report that he found Myer dead — shot through the head. Neighbours arrive: Major Ian Lacey, Piet Pienaar and Mrs Moore-Fenn. The latter is a formidable creature who lives with a mysterious young woman called Rosemarie on a ranch in the wildest part of the veld. They all start arguing about the possible identity of the killer, to the point where Blake has had enough. Leaving Paula in charge, he and Tinker drive to the rondavel where, after much searching, they discover panels in the door through which a man can secretly enter or exit. A wounded Zulu boy then leads them to a distant kraal where primitive rites are taking place, headed by a witch-doctor named Kulu. Sensing impending violence, Blake sends Tinker for help. He arrives back with O'Malley and various of the neighbours just in time to witness Rosemarie — who turns out to be Mrs Moore-Fenn's daughter — in the middle of the frenzied Africans. The whites rescue the girl and discover that the blacks are all drugged. Kulu vanishes. Blake deduces that the rondavel has been the exchange point for illegal drug dealing carried out by Kulu — who the detective believes is a white man. However, before he can investigate further, Blake learns that Paula has disappeared. He traces her to the Moore-Fenn ranch where he finds her holding Mrs Moore-Fenn at gunpoint. The woman lays bare a tale of tragedy and revenge. Unfortunately, the revenge was meted out to the wrong man and now Blake identifies the real cause of all the misfortune ... leading to a final act of vengeance and the suicide of the killer.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Rex Hardinge is always excellent when writing about Africa — a continent he knew very well. His knowledge shines through in the descriptions of the veld and adds much colour to this neat and well-structured thriller. However, as good as this is, it should be pointed out that Rex Hardinge is here reworking a plot he'd used at least three times before, including UNION JACK issue 1,285 THE VICTIM OF THE VELDT (1928) and DETECTIVE WEEKLY issue 320 THE PHANTOM OF THE VELDT (1939).


PASSPORT INTO FEAR
by W. Howard Baker

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 431 · Jun. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: W. S. Greenhalgh (cover) and Margaret Higgins (interior)

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Trivia: The inside back cover contains a group portrait of Blake and co. by Eric Parker. Included in the groups are Sexton Blake, Edward Carter (Tinker), Paula Dane, Marion Lang, Louise Pringle, Mrs. Bardell, Splash Kirby, Jack Trevor Story, W. Howard Baker, Arthur Maclean, Eric Parker, Eustace Craille, Rex Hardinge and Chief Det. Insp. Coutts, .

Unrated


COURIER FOR CRIME
by Jack Trevor Story

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 432 · Jun. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 10d

Illustrator: Fratini

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


CATCH A TIGER!
by Martin Thomas (Thomas Martin)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 433 · Jul. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 1'

Illustrator: Unknown

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Trivia: the inside back cover contains a portrait of Mrs Martha Bardell by Eric Parker (I own the original artwork).

Unrated


SHOWDOWN IN SYDNEY
by Desmond Reid (Noel Browne, revised by Paul George Mann)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 434 · Jul. 1959 · Amalgamated Press · 1'

Illustrator: Fratini

Other content: Editorial Comment: Revival of Old Favourites, Mail Bag.

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


ESPRESSO JUNGLE
by W. Howard Baker

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 435 · Sep. 1959 · Fleetway Publications · 1'

Illustrator: Symeoni and Marc Stone (cover) and Margaret Higgins (interior)

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: This is the first Sexton Blake story not to be published by Amalgamated Press. The company was now named Fleetway Publications. The story was rewritten as a Richard Quintain novel entitled THE CELLAR BOYS by W. Howard Baker (Consul Books, 1965; reprinted as a Five Star Paperback, 1973).

Unrated



Plus:
THE PENNY MURDER
by Jack Trevor Story

Illustrator: Margaret Higgins

Notes: None at present

Unrated


HOME SWEET HOMICIDE
by Jack Trevor Story

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 436 · Sep. 1959 · Fleetway Publications · 1'

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

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


WALK IN THE SHADOWS
by Rex Dolphin

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 437 · Oct. 1959 · Fleetway Publications · 1'

Illustrator: Fratini

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


TOUCH OF EVIL
by Arthur Maclean (E. C. Tubb, with revisions by George Paul Mann)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 438 · Oct. 1959 · Fleetway Publications · 1'

Illustrator: Putzu (cover) and Margaret Higgins (interior)

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


KILLER'S PLAYGROUND
by Edwin Harrison (Eric Alan Ballard)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 439 · Nov. 1959 · Fleetway Publications · 1'

Illustrator: Simbari

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


FEAR IS MY SHADOW
by Martin Thomas (Thomas Martin)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 440 · Nov. 1959 · Fleetway Publications · 1'

Illustrator: Olivetti (cover) and Margaret Higgins (interior)

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Trivia: This issue contains a portrait of George Coutts by Eric Parker.

Unrated


A COLD NIGHT FOR MURDER
by Martin Thomas (Thomas Martin)

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 441 · Dec. 1959 · Fleetway Publications · 1'

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Unrated


GUILTY PARTY!
by Rex Dolphin

THE SEXTON BLAKE LIBRARY · 4th series · Issue 442 · Dec. 1959 · Fleetway Publications · 1'

Illustrator: Eric Parker

Other content: Mail Bag

Notes: None at present.

Unrated