Wednesday, March 13, 2019

More Moto

Today I acquired Mr. Moto's Three Aces, a 1956 book club omnibus containing three of the pre-WWII books. From the fly-leaf:
THANK YOU, MR. MOTO (1936) — The story of two Americans swept into the intrigues which run throughout ancient Peking.... All the city knew that danger lurked in the shadowed streets—that at any second death might come swiftly and silently to prying foreigners. Yet outwardly the city preserved the calm of centuries. Eleanor Joyce was blind to the dangerous connection between her secret commission and national events. Tom Nelson sensed something and his friends feared he had found out too much. Mr. Moto knew, too, but was powerless to interfere—until the blundering of the two Americans suddenly and strangely made him master of the situation!

THINK FAST, MR. MOTO (1937) — The old and respected banking house of Hitchings Brothers in Shanghai is more than a little concerned because a distant relative, Eva Hitchings, has persisted in operating a gambling house in Honolulu—which she defiantly calls Hitchings Plantation. Young Wilson Hitchings, just out from home to learn the business, is sent to Honolulu to wipe out the blot on the family reputation. But he little realized that he would encounter Mr. Moto! With blood-chilling politesse, the slick Mr. Moto keeps four rendezvous with death in twenty-four hours—as Chinese outlaws gamble to lose in Honolulu!

MR, MOTO IS SO SORRY (1938) — On the same train with Sylvia Dillaway and Calvin Gates, bound for Mongolia, were the Russian and Mr. Moto. As soon as Mr. Moto's presence was known to the Russian, he gave his cigarette case to Sylvia. The case was inscribed with a code message to the Russian Army. The fear of danger was borne out when the Russian was mysteriously murdered, and to protect Sylvia, Calvin took the case from her. Then things started happening fast. The Japanese Army wanted that case—and the devious Mr. Moto was playing a little war game of his own. But certain shocking events came to light and turned everything upside down!
More fun reading.

John P. Marquand, Mr. Moto's Three Aces,  Little Brown and Company,  1956.

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