Murder at the Movies

A. E. Eddenden, Author Academy Chicago Publishers $20 (161p) ISBN 978-0-89733-428-0
Two likable cops and charming film nostalgia can't save a far-fetched plot in this third in a series (Murder on the Thirteenth) set in Fort York, Canada, in 1939. Beefy Inspector Albert V. Tretheway and stocky Constable Jake Small love the movies, but Fort York also harbors a fan who ties his pranks and murders to recent films. When a stolen horse appears in a widow's garage, Tretheway sees the parallel with Laurel and Hardy's Flying Deuces. Two residents report seeing a California condor, missing from a local aviary; the link is Only Angels Have Wings. A house is knocked flat, a la in The Wizard of Oz; a murder occurs, familiar in execution to viewers of Gunga Din; a man and dog are killed off in Beau Geste style; a body turns up in a wine barrel, reminiscent of The Tower of London. Using intuition only, Tretheway predicts that the next murder will be based on Gone with the Wind. When caught, the murderer is attempting to simulate the burning of Atlanta by torching a disused railroad. Eddenden probably had fun viewing the marvelous crop of 1939 movies and working out clues, but the result is pointless. Tretheway, his sister Addie, Small and their buddies deserve better. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 08/29/2005
Release date: 08/01/2005
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