John F. Rice

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John F. Rice

John F. Rice’s book reviews

Fans of Edgar Wallace, and who know something of his life, will have realized that not only Mr Stratford Harlow is the Joker in this novel, but also Edgar Wallace himself reveals his own joking side. He lived at Bourne End in the Parish of Marlow. Is that where Harlow, his character's name came from? I believe so.
In Margaret Lane's biography of Edgar Wallace, Wallace is said to have experienced a hot spot at the
top of his head when working. On the second page of The Joker, comes, 'splendid ideas were born in Stratford Harlow's (Edgar Wallace's?) mind, great schemes loomed out of the nowhere which is beyond vision.' His book plots?
Was EW speaking about himself when he observed, 'He had all the requisite qualities of an observer; his enjoyment was without the handicap of sentimentality, a weakness which is fatal to accurate judgement.'
Is this how EW chose his characters?
Stratford Harlow says 'he detests horse racing' but betting on horses was the recreational love of EW's life. What a joke!
There are others in this jolly good read, but I leave to you to look for them yourself.
I must admit that I have fallen to temptation and included odd personal facts in my two published books, Sherlock Holmes's Tibetan Adventure, and The Death Detective and the Skeleton, both available from Amazon. John F. Rice.
08/19/2012