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Tale of the Witch Doll

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Author: Mildred A. Wirt
Published: 1939
Language: English
Wordcount: 40,354 / 126 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 89.5
LoC Category: PZ
Series: Penny Parker
Downloads: 3,936
Added to site: 2010.11.22 29651

With the sometimes reluctant help of her friend Louise Sidell, Penny Parker discovers the secret behind Melvin Osandra's seance establishment, and in turn, helps her friend Nellie Marble out of her difficulties with her doll shop. Additionally, Penny is able to free actress Helene Harmon from the plague of the witch doll that will not disappear.

Show Excerpt

ang from their car and ran to see if anyone had been seriously hurt. A uniformed chauffeur had managed to get the rear door open, and was helping a young woman. The angle of the tilted car floor was so steep that she could not climb out by her own efforts.

"Are you injured, Miss Harmon?" the man asked anxiously.

"I--I think I am all right, James," the young woman murmured. "Just badly shaken."

Penny held the car door open, and the chauffeur lifted Miss Harmon to the ground. She leaned weakly against him for a moment.

"What happened?" she asked in a dazed voice. "The first thing I knew we were in the ditch."

"That road hog in the black car struck us!" said the chauffeur angrily. "And he was too cowardly to stop."

"The first three numbers of his auto license were 386," Louise declared. "The police may be able to trace him."

For the first time the young woman became aware of the girls.

"Did you see the accident?" she inquired.

"Yes, we did," replied

Reader Reviews

Average Rating of 3.9 from 7 reviews: ****
Iboro Udoh

Because of this tale, I had suspended the reading, as if programmatically, to post this remark. I'm overawed, I must confess, by Mildred's inventions. This is a most spectacular story so much so that I have included Mildred A. Wirt in my log of "Otherworldly Authors". Such good read.


Pretty sorry excuse for a mystery. Dated, with a mysterious hunchback and a plucky girl reporter. The suspense is forced and the dialogue strained. Other books of the era are much better. Nancy Drew this is not


Cute, quick, light hearted mystery. Fond of the lead character. Will be reading more of this series.


Beautiful! My first Penny Parker's mystery! I will read the others!

William Suits

I enjoyed these works by Wirt. They are very light reading but enjoyable mysteries.

Linda Otto

I am so excited to have found the Penny Parker series here on Manybooks. I have wanted to read these for years! The author wrote the first 5 Nancy Drew stories for the Stratemeyer syndicate. She didn't enjoy the restriction of the Stratemeyer rules and wrote this series on her own. I may have been the number one Nancy Drew fan on the planet when I was a kid, and I found Penny Parker to be just as good if not better. Maybe a little edgier? I loved it and will read everything by Mildred A Wirt Benson that Manybooks can get! Highly recommended for Nancy Drew fans. Enjoy!


This is a surprisingly sordid tale by a woman who apparently wrote a lot of Nancy Drew books. Penny Parker is not quite a Nancy Drew clone, but pretty close.

Solid enough, but you'll definitely be thinking how stupid (and meek) the characters who are in trouble are.



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