Friday, March 06, 2009

"The Case of the Extra Ventriloquist" by Ron Goulart

From: Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine, May 2009.

In 1951 Los Angeles, detective comic strip artist Jack Ortega happens upon children's radio host Polly Renfrew, trussed up and gagged in the woods. Smitten, Jack unties Polly and asks how she ended up there. Polly and her dummy, Sally Sawdust, were supposed to entertain at the mansion of famous actress Mona Tardy. According to Ms. Tardy, another ventriloquist showed up in Polly's place and stole $200,000 worth of jewels and bearer bonds.

Polly deduces who's behind the theft by having Jack sketch a likeness of the villainous ventriloquist's dummy, but the next day, Polly goes missing and Jack has to play detective to find her.

I was a fan of the early 90s Tek series, ghostwritten for William Shatner by Ron Goulart. Featuring the same lighthearted humor and distinctive speech pattern, this story was doubly nostalgic for me.

1 comment:

Todd Mason said...

Gerald, you have a A LOT of good Goulart reading ahead of you. GHOST BREAKER, the collection of the psychic detective of sorts Max Kearney stories, might be my favorite, but certainly not my only cf, sf, fantasy and more.