MARCH 2014

  • REVIEW: THE FOURTH WITNESS

    AUTHOR: // CATEGORY: Uncategorized

    No Comments
    The Fourth Witness UNION JACK · New series · Issue 916 · 30/4/1921 · Amalgamated Press · 2d
    THE FOURTH WITNESS; OR, THE POOL OF DARKNESS
    by Anon. (Robert Murray Graydon) · Illustrator: E. E. Briscoe
    Other content: The Luck of the Cup by William E. Groves
    Notes: Having been rescued from the Duchess Ysabel de Ferre, Sexton Blake, Tinker, Detective-Inspector Coutts and Dirk Dolland are sailing away from the island of Jorsica on Mademoiselle Yvonne‘s yacht when they are intercepted and captured by a ship owned by the Criminals’ Confederation. Max Vogel, head of the French branch of the organisation intends to execute de Ferre for ignoring orders. He’ll then take possession of Jorsica and use it as a Confederation stronghold, with himself as the new leader while Mr. Reece is left to his fate in the insane asylum where he’s incarcerated. At the island, Vogel goes ashore and imprisons de Ferre, commanding that she be shot at dawn. Blake, however, escapes from the ship and rescues her. They go to a coastal village to raise a force of men with which to oppose the Confederationers but are knocked unconscious when a typhoon-driven tidal wave strikes the island. During this tempest, Yvonne manages to escape and makes her way to her own yacht. After the storm, Vogel and his crew escort their prisoners to the village where they capture Blake and Ysabel and condemn them to the Pool of Darkness, which is occupied by a giant octopus. Just before they are pushed in, an interruption arrives in the form of Mr. Reece, who has escaped from the asylum and come to punish Vogel. The two criminals grapple with one another and plunge to their deaths in the pool. Blake and his friends are rescued from the remaining Confederation men be Yvonne and her crew. With her own yacht destroyed by the storm, they leave the island on the duchess’s craft. Behind them, Ysabel de Ferre takes control of the Criminals’ Confederation.
    Rating: ★★★★★☆
  • REVIEW: THE BANISHED PRINCESS AND HER DAUGHTER

    AUTHOR: // CATEGORY: Uncategorized

    No Comments
    NO COVER AS YET THE PENNY PICTORIAL · Issue 441 · 9/11/1907 · Amalgamated Press · 1d
    THE BANISHED PRINCESS AND HER DAUGHTER
    by Anon. (Cecil Hayter) · Illustrator: R. J. MacDonald
    Other content: Unknown
    Notes: Blake decodes a message he finds in the “personals” section of a newspaper and realises that an attempt will be made to kidnap the daughter of a foreign princess. The princess, divorced from her brutal husband, is currently hiding out in a farmhouse on the Yorkshire Moors. The detective races to her rescue and fights off three men, killing one and wounding another, though the third, Morton gets away. Blake receives a bullet through his shoulder.
    Rating: ★★☆☆☆☆