Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Introducing C. B. Greenfield: Review

Well, I pretty much read the C. B. Greenfield books by Lucile Kallen backwards--or mixed-up--or something.  I started with The Tanglewood Murder, meandered my way to A Little Madness (the last book in the series), and have now finished up with Introducing C. B. Greenfield. In which, guess what? Kallen introduces us to Charles Benjamin Greenfield, editor and owner of the Sloan's Ford Reporter, and his star reporter and side-kick Maggie Rome. 

When Peter Kittle, the newspaper's only delivery boy, is the victim of a hit-and-run accident, Greenfield takes it upon himself to track down the coward who would leave a twelve-year-old hurt and, possibly dying, in the road. He convinces Maggie to play Watson to his Holmes and soon the two newshounds have another mystery to unravel. One of their prime suspects, author Julian Tragar, goes missing--leaving behind an expensive Mercedes, a bloody iron bar, and evidence that something heavy was dragged down to the nearby river. Did Peter's parents take matters into their own hands and attack someone they thought had injured their boy? Or are there others with a reason to want Julian Tragar out of the way? 

I have to say that I kind of wish that I had quit while I was ahead. The Tanglewood Murder (#2 in the series) was a really fun read. The interplay between Greenfield and Maggie was just right and the mix of amateur detective work was right on target. This introductory book just doesn't work as well for me. I suppose part of it is that the characters aren't as settled as they are in number two--Greenfield seems way more grumpy and unwilling to share his theories with Maggie and Maggie doesn't really seem all that inquisitive. Especially given the fact that she's a reporter and it's kind of her job to ask questions and ferret out answers.

I'm glad I read this one for completion's sake (and a big thanks to Peggy Ann for sending me her copy when she was done with it!). But I'm afraid that it's a mere ★★ outing.

Set in New England and first published in 1979, this fulfills the "Set in the U. S." square on the Silver Vintage Bingo card.


fredamans said...

Note to self: Do not read out of sequence... lol... Great review!

Gram said...

I enjoyed all of this series. I read it years ago and that may have something to do with it.

Peggy Ann said...

That's good, I started with the least interesting one so the others will only get better!