#8 of 9 in the Doug Selby series. The full series is:
- The D.A. Calls It Murder (1937)
- The D.A. Holds a Candle (1938)
- The D.A. Draws a Circle (1939)
- The D.A. Goes to Trial (1940)
- The D.A. Cooks a Goose (1942)
- The D.A. Calls a Turn (1944)
- The D.A. Breaks a Seal (1946)
- The D.A. Takes a Chance (1948)
- The D.A. Breaks an Egg (1949)
- Jim Melvin, inventor/salesman of a new parking meter
- Paula Melvin, his wife
- Doris Kane, Paula's mother
- Eve Dawson, a.k.a. Eve Hollenberg, aspiring actress
- Eleanor "Babe" Harlan, Eve's roommate
- Milton Granby
- Hudson Parlin, investment broker; owner of the parking meter patent
- Alphonse Baker Carr, "Old A.B.C"
- Doug Selby, District Attorney
- Rex Brandon, Sheriff
- Sylvia Martin, reporter for The Clarion
Doris appeals to Doug Selby. He and Sheriff Rex Brandon and Doris return to the house - without a warrant - and surprise - everything has been cleaned up.
After a tip, Paula and her husband, Jim Melvin, are found occupying a house in neighboring La Salidas. They invite Doris to stay but don't say anything about why they are in the wrong house.The house comes with a guest - aspiring actress Eve Dawson. Doris enters Eve's room to find her dead, stabbed. Her body also has evidence of a prior gunshot wound.
Review: For once, Doug Selby stays a step ahead of old A.B. Carr. Every time Selby encounters a Carr setup, he immediately recognizes it for what it is. I am even starting to like A.B. a bit now, his presenting a duplicate knife to Selby seems to be with the best intentions; and he and I share several characteristics (doesn't like to go out at night, doesn't drive fast, has a nice home library, etc)!
I have found my best way of reading any ESG yarn is to read it start to finish in one or two sittings. Once the action begins, it has a certain momentum; and if I set it aside a few days the momentum fades.
Overall, this was a great Selby - perhaps the best thus far. I didn't miss Inez Stapleton a bit.