Vintage Golden Age Mystery
Scavenger Hunt Category: Statue
Date Finished: February 29, 2016
This 1952 mystery seems to be one of the few by Paul Ernst, who prospered more in the pulps through the creation of The Avenger. Here an insurance investigator in New York City becomes involved with a girl and a night club murder, along with some blackmail, a diamond theft, and a bronze mermaid statue. He doggedly pursues the case and somewhat stumbles upon questions and clues, and bodies, missed by the police, while getting beat up a few times. The detective is quite likable and earnest with a believable attraction to the woman he suspects of it all. The murderer isn’t that difficult to discover, nor is the individual being blackmailed. Not exceptional, but pleasing. The cover of the Pennant paperback states, “Murder Prowls New York’s Street of Strippers” but there aren’t any strippers here and the setting and characters aren’t terribly seedy.