RARA-AVIS: John Holbrook Vance

McHale, Steve (SMcHale@filenet.com)
Tue, 28 Dec 1999 08:20:39 -0800

        I have read The Pleasant Grove Murders. I liked it very much but I would not consider it hard boiled. It's a rural setting featuring a smart sheriff, a wrongly accused parolee and some obnoxious small town politics. It reminded me very much of Richard Wormser's The Intruder or Helen Nielsen's Detour. I've been looking for Vance's other crime book, The Fox Valley Murders (forgive me it that is not the correct title). The only copy I saw was a good hardcover with dustjacket for over $200.

> Mr. Vance also penned some more prosaically situated crime stories. I've
> got a copy of his THE PLEASANT GROVE MURDERS. I haven't read same myself
> yet but, according to blurbs on the back of this Ace paperback, Anthony
> Boucher and the NEW YORK TIMES both liked it. The King Features Syndicate
> is also enblurbed as stating: "THIS IS DETECTIVE FICTION AT ITS BEST".

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