Cay Van Ash: Ten Years Beyond Baker Street; Harper & Row, New York.
In 1929, when producer David O. Selznick was still young enough to be designated a “Wunderkind,” he came up with an idea for a story that could be a part of a movie revue called Paramount on Parade. As he wrote in a memo to a Paramount executive, “I wonder if it would not be entertaining to have a little burlesque in the Revue of Philo Vance (William Powell), and Sherlock Holmes (Clive Brook), in pursuit of Fu Manchu (Warner Oland).” It was an interesting concept more than 50 years ago, and is, apparently, still intriguing today. Cay Van Ash teams Holmes not with Vance but with Dr. Petrie, the man who, with Nayland Smith, tracked the Chinese master criminal through the pages of Sax Rohmer’s books. Unfortunately, unlike Selznick’s scheme, the book is not a burlesque but is serious, oh too serious.