Vintage Silver Age Mystery
Scavenger Hunt Category: Shadowy Figure
Date Finished: July 9, 2016
The second of three Lt. Max Hunter mysteries from W.T. Ballard again focuses on the work of the sheriff’s department in Las Vegas. Here an astrologer is found dead in his store/home, a day after attempting, but failing, to bring Hunter’s attention to a bomb threat. Seven casinos receive bomb threats and Hunter ties in the astrologer’s murder to that case. Also tied in are seven prostitutes the astrologer was friends with, most of whom have fled Las Vegas. One is soon found dead, so the assumption is that one of them knows something about the bomber and can lead the police to him before the bombs go off. This is a fairly enjoyable series and Ballard’s work is well done, though the mystery is not too difficult to figure out here. Much of the book involves Hunter tracking down the seven women, which doesn’t leave much time left for deep thinking. Still, it is too bad there aren’t more of these.
It is a little difficult to see, but there is a shadowy figure going away from the scene at the top of the cover.