The Wall Street Journal Review

The Wall Street Journal Review

March 21, 2014

"Even the most baffled detective may take heart from Sherlock Holmes's sage pronouncement in "The Adventure of the Red-Headed League" (1891): "As a rule, the more bizarre a thing is, the less mysterious it proves to be." The 1937 triple homicide of Veronica Gedeon, an attractive model who posed for artists and crime magazines; her mother; and an English boarder at their Beekman Place apartment on Manhattan's East Side luridly demonstrates Holmes's wisdom. Despite, of necessity, taking the culprit's identity for granted, Harold Schechter's account of the crime, "The Mad Sculptor," is as gripping as the cleverest Golden Age mystery.... Mr. Schechter's rediscovery of this long-neglected tale merits gratitude."