The War Terror

The War Terror


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The War Terror by Arthur B. Reeve







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The War Terror


(1 Review)
A mystery, scientific, detective story, featuring Craig Kennedy as the hero.

Book Excerpt

ited by Burke's news of the wonderful electro-magnetic gun.

"Burke," he exclaimed suddenly, "let's join forces. I think we are both on the trail of a world-wide conspiracy--a sort of murder syndicate to wipe out war!"

Burke's only reply was a low whistle that involuntarily escaped him as he reached over and grasped Craig's hand, which to him represented the sealing of the compact.

As for me, I could not restrain a mental shudder at the power that their first murder had evidently placed in the hands of the anarchists, if they indeed had the electro-magnetic gun which inventors had been seeking for generations. What might they not do with it--perhaps even use it themselves and turn the latest invention against society itself!

Hastily Craig gave a whispered account of our strange visit from Miss Lowe, while Burke listened, open-mouthed.

He had scarcely finished when he reached for the telephone and asked for long distance.

"Is this the German embassy in Washington?" aske


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This is an annoyingly misleading book. Published in 1915 and with the title THE WAR TERROR, one would expect a novel dealing with Craig Kennedy in combatting espionage and sabotage. It is instead a group of twelve short stories which can pass for a novel only because of the one paragraph seques by which Reeve moves from one story to another.

The misleading is continued in a one page introduction signed by Walter Jameson which says that ...not all of these experiences grew...out of the war, but there were several that did..." If there were several, most of them must have been saved for another book. In this book, only the title story has any bearing on the war.

Now that I have gotten over my snit, I must say that I enjoyed this book. The title story is interesting as an adventure, in which a beautiful anarchist recruits Kennedy to save the life of a German financier/spy she has sworn to kill. In this one Kennedy's detection is of relatively minor importance and his participation is not necessary to abort both the murder and the espionage mission. But it is fun.

The other stories involve Kennedy in his usual role of uncovering murderers, thwarting blackmailers and disrupting heroin gangs through his scientific method. It has the virtue of most Kennedy stories in presenting not bad detection with a picture of the cutting edge of science in the second decade of the twentieth century. Among the delights are the use of a home-made hydrolysis machine to save the life a pet dog and at the same time prevent a murder.

Among the villains and villainies taken on in the book is the then popular and influential, but now discredited, eugenics movement. That story, "The Eugenic Bride", greatly raised my opinion of Reeve's intelligence and courage.