FFB: The Great Merlini – The Complete Stories of the Magician Detective by Clayton Rawson

The Great Merlini, The Complete Stories of the Magician Detective by Clayton Rawson, Mystery short stories, 2012 Mysterious Press/Open Road Integrated Media ebook.

These stories were published in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine over a period of twenty five years, beginning in 1946 and continuing until 1971.

The Stories:
” The Clue of the Tatooed Man” (1946)
“The Clue of the Broken Legs” (1946)
“The Clue of the Missing Motive” (1947)
“From Another World” (1948)
“Off the Face of the Earth” (1949)
“Merlini and the Lie Detector” ((1955)
“Merlini and the Vanished Diamonds” (1955)
“Merlini and the Sound Effects Murder” (1955)
“Nothing is Impossible” (1958)
“Miracles — All in a Day’s Work” (1958)
“Merlini and the Photographic Clues” (1969)
“The World’s Smallest Locked Room” (1971)

My Take:
I bought this ebook on the recommendation of Jeff Meyerson, and he didn’t steer me wrong (rarely does). I really enjoyed the stories a lot. Light, straightforward, fun, most of them are locked room, of one form or another, and those are always a lot of fun. As far as I know, this book is only available in ebook from Open Road. I didn’t mind at all, because they were so entertaining. There are several of Rawson’s novels also available, but I wish there were more stories. Unfortunately, these are all he wrote. Recommended.

About Richard Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
This entry was posted in Books & Reading, current reading, Mystery, Short Stories. Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to FFB: The Great Merlini – The Complete Stories of the Magician Detective by Clayton Rawson

  1. Like you, I took Jeff Meyerson’s advice and downloaded THE GREAT MERLINI. I read some of the stories years ago in a Clayton Rawson collection, but it’s nice to have all of the stories. I’m sure I’ll get to THE GREAT MERLINI sometime during the the Coronavirus Crisis. Meanwhile, I’ll be reading more Big Fat Books. Stay safe!

    • I’m so tired of the constant Covid-19 news I’ve decided to have a news blackout here today (for myself, Barbara will be watching and listening). The weather should be nice, so I’ll walk in the garden, read, listen to music, read, and maybe work on a puzzle. In other words, relax, hopefully without fear.

  2. Patti Abbott says:

    This sounds like fun, especially watching the character over the years.

  3. Jerry House says:

    There is a reason The Great Merlini was called “Great.”

    You may also want to check out Rawson’s stories about Don Diavolo, the Scarlet Wizard, written under his Stuart Towne pseudonym.

  4. Jeff Meyerson says:

    Thanks, Rick. I thought you would like it. I really should get to the next Merlini novel.

  5. Gee whiz. What a great time for Comcast to go blooey. Everyone’s supposed to be staying home, and television is a big part of spending the evening, and our cable company goes out. Expletive!!

    When I say blooey, I mean there’s no ability to see any programs, or apps (Prime, Netflix, movies on the DVD, etc.) nada. Grumble. We watched PBS Newshour on the tablet, but come on, Comcast!

  6. tracybham says:

    These short stories sound like fun. I see that the first novel has been reprinted in the new Otto Penzler series, maybe I will look into getting that eventually.

    I hope you had your Comcast back today. That does sound like a real pain. I need to go on a news blackout for awhile. I was successful at doing that with political stuff, but haven’t been able to avoid all the Coronavirus news.

    • Yes, it came back, I’m just grumpy. Make that Grumpy. Maybe GRUMPY. I’m having computer problems, I’m sick of hearing the White House briefings, about the neighbor’s cat, grocery hoarders, you name it.

      • tracybham says:

        I would describe myself as cranky. I don’t follow White House briefings, but I do check for what the governor is saying and our county news, and all of that is confusing enough. My sister in Alabama and my brother in Florida (Panama City area) are OK for now.

  7. Art Scott says:

    Gregg Press published this collection in hardback in 1979, edited by Otto & with an introduction by Eleanor Sullivan. For those allergic to e-books, I see there are copies on abe – starting at $65 and up from there (I see that I paid $5 for my pristine copy). I’ve been casting about for something fun to (re-)read and this will be just the thing. Good tip! I have the Merlini novels too, all as Dell Mapbacks.

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