Day 983: The 1947 Club! The Iron Clew

Cover for The Iron ClewI read The Iron Clew for The 1947 Club and what a blast it was! I was expecting a typical Golden Age mystery—heavy on the puzzle, light on motivation and character. What I got was something completely different!

Leonidas Witherall is blocked. He is the author of a series of adventure novels starring the fiery Lieutenant Haseltine. But now that the war is over, Witherall thinks that his usual villains are passé. The Nazis are beat, and the Russians are our allies, for heaven’s sake!

Mrs. Mullet, his housekeeper, advises him to move from espionage to mysteries. In no time, Witherall has invented a plot involving brown paper packages and a murder of a prominent man.

Witherall has been ignoring his own brown paper package. It is a report from the Dalton Safe Deposit and Trust Company that he is supposed to be reviewing before his dinner meeting with Balderston, the bank manager. But the muse is calling, so Witherall has just enough time to dress for dinner before going down to the hall to pick up the package. But it is gone!

Witherall hears a door closing and realizes that the thief has just left. When he sees no one walking away, he surmises that the thief is hiding in the yews at the front of the house. He tricks the thief into coming out and sees a lady in a mink emerge with a brown paper package in her handbag.

1947 clubAfter he steals the package, he becomes the quarry in a rowdy chase through the neighborhood, to be rescued by Harriman, an old boy from his school-teaching days. This incident sends him on a rollicking adventure involving several brown parcels, a green handbag, a dinosaur footprint, a murder, a kidnapping, and a massive Massachusetts snowstorm. Leonidas is helped along by a plethora of young people and an old flame.

The plot of this novel is ridiculous. The writing is energetic and witty, the characters engaging. What more could you ask? This novel was a lot of fun!

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8 thoughts on “Day 983: The 1947 Club! The Iron Clew

  1. Lory @ Emerald City Book Review October 10, 2016 / 3:59 pm

    This sounds like terrific fun. And a Massachusetts setting too ! I have never heard of this Alice Tilton, will have to look her up.

  2. whatmeread October 10, 2016 / 4:46 pm

    It was a pseudonym, and she also wrote under another name.

  3. TJ @ MyBookStrings October 11, 2016 / 8:24 am

    This sounds like such fun! How did you come across it? I will have to look for a copy now.

  4. whatmeread October 11, 2016 / 8:27 am

    When I looked at a list of books published in 1947 for the 1947 Club, it just sort of leaped out at me.

  5. Naomi October 11, 2016 / 9:44 am

    This one sounds like fun! I’m glad you found it for the rest of us!

  6. Carolyn O October 11, 2016 / 4:50 pm

    I love the idea of the 1947 club, and this book sounds like a great time.

    • whatmeread October 15, 2016 / 9:19 pm

      It was. I think they have them every few months, with a different year.

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