_The Black Box_ is a series of loosely connected short stories detailing the adventures of Sanford Quest, world\'s greatest criminologist. I read most of it then moved on - awkward dialog, predictable plot, and points of interest few and far between.
Police struggle with multiple crimes of murder and jewel theft. A good mystery read. My only complaint is that Fletcher has a tendency to point out suspicious behavior during plot development, then leaves too many of these points unanswered.
Not one of Fletcher's better efforts.
1) The motive for the crime is extremely unlikely. 2) The "flash of insight" that reveals the criminal requires deduction that would challenge Sherlock Holmes on his best day. 3) Some critical loose ends are left unresolved. "My own reasons" and "Never mind why" do not enlighten the reader - and would certainly not satisfy the police.
It is a decent story but at the end of a good mystery there should be a sense of completeness and resolution - not so here.
I give the author credit for coming up with an intriguing plot concept. A 20th century town is thrown intact through time, millions of years into the future, where the citizens find a nearly dead planet earth. Unfortunately the plot and behavior of the characters soon become unrealistic, annoying, and predictable.