The Case Of The Screaming Woman-Erle Stanley Gardner (1957)

erle stanley gardner-the case of the screaming woman

More simplistic than the usual Perry Mason mystery. It’s not bad but not a must read in the series.

Joan Kirby calls Perry. She wants to hire him to cross examine her husband John. The night before he says he picked up a female carrying a gas can to her car. The car can’t be found so he registers them at a motel as husband and wife. A few minutes later John left for home. Now the woman has disappeared. Perry gets the story from him and hires Paul Drake to investigate.

Della Street makes a connection with a woman heard screaming in the office of Dr.Babb out in the suburbs. He’s in the black market baby racket and has a notebook listing all the babies he arranged adoptions for. A neighbor saw a young woman running from the scene and the description fits the woman Kirby was with. There’s also the name Kirby in the doctor’s appointment book.

Someone hit Babb over the head. He died later in the hospital. Even though Perry caught Kirby in a number of lies he defends him on a murder charge. D.A.Hamilton Burger comes off more as a buffoon in this rather than the usual angry adversary who has some brains. As usual thinks he finally has a way to get Perry disbarred.

There’s no Lt.Tragg here or any real police investigation although Perry does get his licks in with a cop on the witness stand. There is a brief scene where he tells Della how much he appreciates her and how he can’t really do without her.

About vintage45

I'm a big fan of vintage books,movies,TV shows and music. I encourage everyone to patronize your local used book/record store and pick up some of the good stuff. My posts are capsule reviews of some favorites that you may want to investigate. The albums posted aren't really reviews but items from my collection that are still available. I try and point out highlights of each one and let the music speak for itself. Thanks to all for checking out the blog.
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