Queen's Bureau of Investigation: the Casebook

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Ellery Queen Junior (1942 - 1966)

Since all of the juveniles were ghostwritten, for a long time authorship remained a close-kept secret. We do know Lee edited the books. Ghostwriters James Holding aroused the ire of Lee by farming out the writing of at least one book to a "sub-ghost".  This practice has made establishing authorship even worse.

Pulp fiction writer Frank Belknap Long (1901-1994) has admitted writing at least two, unfortunately, without mentioning the titles. Mike Nevins, and in his wake half the internet, identified them as The Golden Eagle Mystery and The Green Turtle Mystery.

We know Samuel (Duff) McCoy (1882-1964) had a contract with the Lee/Dannay for each of the first eight juveniles from The Black Dog Mystery until The Blue Herring Mystery. But he didn't write them...

Whilst researching his new book on Ellery Queen Jeffrey Marks found a first edition of The Red Chipmunk Mystery with the following inscription "Rhinebeck, N.Y. Aug. 31/48 For Karen Rose from the only real ghost who had anything to do with this book - Harold Montanye". He looked into this and found proof in correspondence between McCoy and Montanye that all final six books before 1954 beginning with The Green Turtle Mystery were written by Montanye.

Which throws a different light on the Frank Belknap Long admission to writing two or three in a letter to August Derleth. The identification of two books was based on Nevins identification and the third volume one may have been The Mystery of the Golden Butterfly which was apparently never published. (Without reference to EQ jr this "elusive" volume is mentioned as Long's on the rear panel of The Horror from the Hills, 1963 and on the rear flap of The Rim of the Unknown, 1972). Long's two remaining volumes can only be the two remaining first volumes: The Black Dog Mystery and The Golden Eagle Mystery.

Nine mysteries have Djuna as main character and can be called the Djuna-series. In the 60s a pause in the series occurred when James Holding was contracted to continue the series as  Ellery Queen, Jr. The first two of his EQ jr. book featured Gulliver Queen, described as the nephew of famous detective, in the leading role and were issued by Golden Press with their distinctive blue-diamond spine. But as it turns out, both of these mysteries were not in fact Holding's work. The son of Joseph Lawrence Greene (1914-1990) stated that his father, who also wrote the Dig Allen series (1959-1962) for Golden Press, was, in fact, the author of one of the Golden Press books (1961-1962) We did find a copyright entry for The Mystery of the Merry Magician by Joseph Greene and one for The Mystery of the Vanishing Victim by Paul Newman.  Most likely this was Paul Sylvan Newman an American writer of comic books, comic strips and books whose career spanned the 1940s to 1990s.

The Djuna series was reprised by Holding in 1966 with The Purple Bird Mystery. The interruption in the series between 1954 and 1966 probably explains why the ninth (and last) title is harder to find.  For The Purple Bird Mystery the copyright entry mentions "David Hodges & others" (aside from Lee and Dannay). David Hodges was responsible for the drawings in this book. Most likely this last book in the series is the only writing Holding contributed to the Junior series.

''Ellery Queen is one of the world’s finest detectives, but his adventures are nothing compared to the Ellery Queen Jr. Mystery Stories. Join Queen’s apprentice, Djuna, and his trusty Scottie, Champ, on adventures filled with danger, suspense, and thrills.''

Djuna serie:
The Black Dog Mystery
(1942)
The Golden Eagle Mystery (1942)
The Green Turtle Mystery (1944)
The Red Chipmunk Mystery (1946)
The Brown Fox Mystery (1948)
The White Elephant Mystery (1950)
The Yellow Cat Mystery (1952)
The Blue Herring Mystery (1954)

                  Gulliver serie:
                  The Mystery of the Merry Magician (1961)
                  The Mystery of the Vanished Victim (1962)

The Purple Bird Mystery (1966)

The Mystery of the Merry Magician - Q.B.I. The Mystery of the Vanished Victim - Q.B.I. The Purple Bird Mystery - Q.B.I.

Click on one of the covers to read more...

Uncollected Short Stories (1956- 1971)

Radio script adaptations

Since the publication of The Tragedy of Errors (1999), which featured some uncollected stories, the only short stories which were never compiled are these radio script adaptations.

  • "Adventure of the Frightened Star" (radio) (EQMM, Spring/42)
  • "Adventure of the Mark of Cain" (radio) (The Pocket Mystery Reader, Pocket Books 172, 1942)
  • "Adventure of the Meanest Man in the World" (radio) (EQMM, 7/42)
  • "Adventure of the Mouse's Blood" (radio) (EQMM, 9/42)
  • "Adventure of the Good Samaritan" (radio) (EQMM, 11/42)
  • "Adventure of the Fire-Bug" (radio) (EQMM, 3/43)
  • "The Man Who Could Double the Size of Diamonds". A clever script from "The Adventures of Ellery Queen" radio series of the late 1930s and the 1940s. “The Adventure of the Man Who Could Double the Size of Diamonds” (which was reprinted in EQMM in May 1943 and August 2005) is read here by Mark Lagasse.  To hear the podcast click here..."Adventure of the Man Who Could Double the Size of Diamonds" (radio) (EQMM, 5/43)
    (Click on Podcast icon to enjoy!...)
  • "Adventure of the Murdered Ship" (script from EQMM, 7/43)
  • "Adventure of the Blind Bullet" (radio) (EQMM, 9/43)
  • "Adventure of the One-Legged Man" (radio) (EQMM, 11/43)
  • "Adventure of the Wounded Lieutenant" (radio) (EQMM, 7/44)
  • "The Disappearance of Mr. James Phillimore" (radio) (from The Misadventures of Sherlock Holmes, 1944)
  • "Ellery Queen, Swindler" (radio) (Rogue's Gallery, 1945)

The American Weekly insert

Said to have been more Manfred's doing. Over the years several 'true crimes" were published in American Weekly, an insert in several journalsWritten especially for The American Weekly. Initially they started with elaborate descriptions from the "Case Book Of True Mysteries" soon to be followed by series of more "fictionalized" reports of true events.
Several distinct series are to be recognized. "The Big City Police Files" (done by several authors) is one of the first soon followed by "Ellery Queen's International Crime File" . This series had cases which "... have been drawn both from official archives and confidential sources. Mr. Queen usually conceals key identities under fictitious names but in this article, because the case is a well-know and recent one, he has not done so." The best of them were compiled into International Casebook (1954-55). As of November 4th 1956 "Crimes of Passion"  started to be followed by another series called "The Woman in the Case" (February 16. 1958) which also had it's best stories collected in The Woman in the Case (1958-59). The last series wasn't collected as such, published under the header "Masterpieces of Crime Detection" some stories were included in the previous collection.

     "Death of a Don Juan"
       
   American Weekly (September 14, 1952)
          "Many Clues made a famous mystery of the Joseph Elwell Murder Case and
           started a new school of detective fiction
." The Elwell case has been used as the
           basis of many crime novels. Supposedly this case resulted in the formation of
           the writing partnership of Ellery Queen.

    "The Taylor Case" (The Murder Hollywood Can't Forget)
       
   American Weekly (October 26, 1952)
           reprinted in The Mammoth Book of Murder by Richard Glyn Jones as
           "Hollywood's Most Baffling Murder"
          
It was an article on the life and death of William Desmond Taylor, a top
           Paramount film director in early Hollywood who was shot to death on
           February 1, 1922. His unsolved murder was one of Hollywood's major
           scandals. This is the famous killing also involved Mable Normand and Mary
           Miles Minter. Ellery Queen seems to have relied primarily on Sutherland's 1929
           Liberty article.
           With art by Bill Baker.

      

       "The Grammar Case" (a fascinating look at a famous murder)
             American Weekly (September 13, 1953
)
             Murder from "Big City Police Files - Baltimore". This story starts with the
             line:
"As you read this a young man sits in a  small room in an old stone
             building in Baltimore City, thinking...

       "The Lake Palourde Case"
            American Weekly (October 11, 1953
)
            Murder from "Big City Police Files - New Orleans"

        "The Case of Terror in Texas"
            American Weekly (November 8. 1953
)
            From the "Big City Police files - Dallas"  with art by Robert Patterson.

        "The Lethal Lady"
            American Weekly (February 7. 1954
)
            From the "Big City Police files - Los Angeles" the story of 'lethal lady' Louise
            Bosley Peete Judson

           "Mrs. Holmes Solves A Murder"
             American Weekly (March 7, 1954
)
             From the "Big City Police files - St.Louis"  with art by Birney Lettick.

       

      "The Black Swan Murder Case"
            American Weekly (July 25, 1954
)
            The case from the year before that involved Anna Maria Moneta Caglio (the
            Black Swan) and the murder of Wilma Montesi. A great short that mixes wild
            parties with police bribery, dope, an ex-Nazi spy, and an amateur detective.

      "The Love Slaves Orissa"
            American Weekly (September 19, 1954)
           
The Police of India unearth an evil cult...

      "Mystery of the Crambling Road"
            American Weekly (October  3, 1954)

      "Murderin' Lovers Lane"
            American Weekly (October  24, 1954)
             with art by Louis Glanzman.

      "The Two-Way Clue"
            American Weekly (October 31, 1954)
            
with art by Louis Glanzman.

      "Murder at the Tea Party"
            American Weekly (November  7, 1954)
            "Why did four killers break in a house full of chattering women"

      "Dream Cottage Murder"
            American Weekly (November 14, 1954) 
            It involves the murder of  Melvin Clark, alleged wife swapping parties and the
            accusation of Clark's wife, Lorraine Clark, as the killer.

       

      "Crimes of Passion"
         
(#1
The Taxi Dancer and the Homesick Highlander)
             American Weekly (
November 4, 1956)

      "Murder After Forty"
             American Weekly (
November 11, 1956)

      "The Terrible Avenger of Karos Island"
          American Weekly (November 18, 1956)
            
reprinted in Weekend (Feb 6 ,1960)

      "The Persistent Killer"
          American Weekly (November 25, 1956)

      "The Girl Who Went Too Far"
          
 American Weekly (December 2, 1956)

       "The Trail of Broken Hearts"
             American Weekly (December 9, 1956) 

      "Murder over Mt.Torment"
          American Weekly (December 16, 1956)

      "The Wife Who Wouldn't Let Go"
           
 American Weekly (January 6, 1957)
             She promised 'Till dead do us part' - and meant it.
             with art by Robert Moore.

       "4 Short Cuts To Love"
           
American Weekly (January 13, 1957)
            with art by Rocco Lolito.

       "The Body in Trunk"
           
American Weekly (January 20, 1957)

       "Why These Boys Killed Their Father"
           
American Weekly (January 27, 1957)
            with art by John McClelland.

       "The Strange Case Of Napoleon Caproni"
           
American Weekly (February 03, 1957)
            with art by Bob Hilbert.

       "10 Graves for the Pretty Widow"
           
American Weekly (February 10, 1957)
            with art by Robert Moore.

       "The Tennis Racket Murder"
            American Weekly (February 17 1957)
            with art by Bob Hilbert

      "The Diabolical Lover"
            American Weekly (February 24 1957) 

      "The Strange Case of the Mad Sculptor"
            American Weekly (March 10, 1957)

      "The Friendly Killers"
            American Weekly (March 24, 1957)
            with art by Roy Besser.

        "The Girl Who Had Never Been Kissed"
            American Weekly (March 31, 1957)

      "The Murder in the Underground"
           American Weekly (April 7, 1957) 

      "Sence of Guilt"
            American Weekly (April 14, 1957) 

       "Love at Second Sight"
            American Weekly (April 28, 1957) 

      "The Girl Who Wouldn't Go Steady"
            American Weekly (May 5, 1957) 
            "She was only 16 and too innocent to understand that a mixture of
             puppy love and jealousy can be deadly".

      "Till Death did them Part"
            American Weekly (May 12, 1957) 

      "Who blew up Mr. Smith?"
            American Weekly (May 19, 1957) 
            Supposedly based on a true story which took place in Portland Oregon

        "Death of a Playboy"
            American Weekly (May 26, 1957)

            with art by Bob Hilbert.

      "Love in the Death House"
            American Weekly (June 2, 1957) 
 
           with art by Dick Kohfield.

      "The Clue of the Missing Hands"
           
American Weekly (November 24. 1957)
            with art by Arthur Sarnoff.

           

      "Two Routes to Murder"
           
American Weekly (October 26, 1958)
            Supposedly based on a true happening this shortstory is billed as the first in a
            series of real-life "Masterpieces of Crime Detection" It 's a story  about two
            small town cops who solve the disappearance of a 13-year-old girl.

       "Murder In The Cabbage Patch"
          
 American Weekly (November 2. 1958)

       "The Clue Of The Naughty Word"
           
American Weekly (November 9, 1958)

      "The Body in the Bathtub"
           
American Weekly (November 16. 1958)

      "Double Jeopardy"
           
American Weekly (November 30, 1958)

      "Clue of the Foxtail Grass"
           
American Weekly (December 7, 1958)

      "Clue of the Shattered Watch"
           
American Weekly (December 14, 1958)

       "The Hunt for the Phantom Gunman"
          
American Weekly (January 4, 1959)

       "The Baby-Sitter Murder"
          
American Weekly (January 11, 1959)

       "Murder with 18,000 Suspects"
          
American Weekly (February 8. 1959)

       "Murder by Proxy"
          
American Weekly (March 8, 1959)
           Case which was solved when a stubborn policeman bet his reputation on a
          
hunch which paid off handsomely for Capt. William R. Hanna of the
           Pennsylvania State Police.

       "The Red Herring Murder"
          
American Weekly (March 15, 1959)
           with art by Tran Mawicke.

        "The Firebug Murders"
          
American Weekly (April 5, 1959)

       "The Clue in the Wallet"
          
American Weekly (April 26, 1959)

       "Album of Death"
           
American Weekly (May 17. 1959)

                              

Others...

    "Will the Oakes Murder Ever be Solved?"
          Family Weekly (November 1. 1959)
          Bahamians claim to know who stole into Sir Harry's bedroom and bludgeoned
          and burned the hated millionaire: if so, why hasn't the island goverment acted?


    "Plunder and Death on the High Seas"
         
Official Detective Stories (October 1960)
          A great six-page story by Ellery Queen : it chronicles a non-fiction case
          investigated by Lt. Rene Raiole of the Monroe County Sheriff's Department
          in Key West, Florida. The case of Captain Boatwright and the stolen cabin
          cruiser Honiara and the hijacked Muriel III and ultimately murder!

     
"The Case of Colorado's Millionaire Brewer Coors"
          Official Detective Stories (February 1961)
          
A disappearance is solved with the discovery of a pile of bones, then a new
          mystery begins. A leading writer of detective stories tells the stranger-than-
          fiction, complete, fact-detective story of a wealthy man's disappearance and
          the tangled trail detectives followed until


   
"The Man Everybody Hated (Who Killed)"
         
Family Weekly (June 11. 1961)
          Serge Rubinstein was a cheat in love and business he used beautiful women
          and brilliant men as pawns - until the night an intruder entered his locked
          mansion and ended a legend in evil.


    "A Specialist in Skulls"
          Argosy (March 1963)
          The Master of mystery fiction turns his hand here to a murder that actually
          happened. About forensic science. . .   Full page color painting by Lou
          Glanzman

    "Big Dame Hunters" 
          Man's Magazine, Vol.14, N° 4, April 1966

"Big Dame Hunters"  in Man's Magazine, Vol.14, Nr 4, April 1966

    "The Killer Who Had Body Ardor"
          Man's Magazine, Vol. 14, No. 7, July 1966,

    "Sweet Assassins’ and the Liberation,"
          The Blade Sunday Magazine, Feb 14. 1971,
         
Syndicated Sunday supplement to Sunday Magazine.
          Detective Ellery Queen takes a look at the depth of women's rage and finds
          women's lib and female killers have some feelings in common - link - 

 

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