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Old 03-11-2010, 11:40 PM   #1
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Wells, Carolyn: Raspberry Jam, v1, 12 March 2010.

Carolyn Wells [1862–1942]
Raspberry Jam [1920]

A locked-room mystery with a psychic mystery subplot.

Mike Grost comments:
“Raspberry Jam” (1920) is one of Wells’ best impossible crime stories. It avoids the cheating with secret passages often found in Wells. Instead, it includes impossible crime ideas that are still considered solid approaches. Its main puzzle is linked to Wells’ earliest such stories: explaining how outsiders might penetrate a locked domicile - here done right. It combines the locked-apartment mystery of “A Chain of Evidence,” with a solution that shares imagery with “The White Alley,” but which is simpler, more plausible, and fair play. “Raspberry Jam” also has three good subplots about explaining purported psychic phenomena, also a Wells tradition. The writing is lively throughout. Much of the detection is by Fleming Stone's teenage assistant, street kid Fibsy, who is well characterized. This is not Fibsy's debut, but it is perhaps his richest portrait in a Wells novel.
http://mikegrost.com/hanshews.htm#Wells
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