Woodworth makes the following comments:
A good guide in writing is style, and if several books sparkle and then two ludicrously dull-witted duds follow, all shown to be, by publisher's records, by the same author, then believe your own mind, not those records. If an author who cannot write at all suddenly, late in a series, produces two masterpieces in a row, assume a subcontractor.In Issue 31, there was an article about the last 10 titles in the Beverly Gray series. The reviewer had no idea whether Clair Blank was a pseudonym for one or more than one person, and pointed out that some of the stories are uneven. For instance, a few of them have the usual extremely large cast of characters, and the reviewer expressed his disgust about their aimless wanderings in The Susabella. The comments about the accursed, idiotic boat were rather funny, and the reviewer expressed glee when the boat made its final voyage.
Mainly, remember this: the truth is slippery. This is not to say that you can't get at it, but it IS to say that you don't stand a chance at all of getting at it unless you use YOUR OWN brain rather than someone else's. Be an independent thinker and a lone voyager, not a follower or a thought-commuter packed into an ignominious bus going in the common—and invariably wrong—direction.
But I digress. The reviewer believed that the final volumes were written by more than one person since Beverly Gray's Secret and Beverly Gray's Island Mystery did not have the usual cast of characters, and Beverly worked primarily alone. What we now know that that Clair Blank was a real person who wrote the entire series—as far as we know. However, after reading the comments in both issues, I do have to wonder, what if? What if Clair Blank had someone else write a couple of books?
We do know of two instances in which the final volume of a series was not written by the person who received credit. Betty Cavanna stated that she did not write the final Connie Blair book, The Mystery of the Ruby Queens, but instead contracted to have someone else write it for her. We also know that the final Vicki Barr book, The Brass Idol Mystery, was written by Walter Gibson rather than by Helen Wells for the same reason.
The idea that the Beverly Gray books may not have all been written by Clair Blank is certainly something to consider. In fact, there is at least one instance in which the name of one of the major characters is incorrect. I have always passed it off as a just a random editorial mistake, but there is always a chance that it could have been something more. It is something to consider.