Saturday, March 14, 2015

Ken Holt #15 Gallows Cliff and #16 Silver Scorpion

In Ken Holt #15, The Mystery of Gallows Cliff, Ken and Sandy are driving to San Francisco.  They stop in Gallows Cliff, Arizona, to check on an archaeological dig.  Quite unexpectedly, the boys cross paths with Mort Phillips and Ramon Gonzales.  Mort and Ramon are trying to find some smugglers, so Ken and Sandy decide to join the investigation.  They decide that the archaeological dig may be the center of operations for whomever is responsible for the smuggling.

This is the second story to feature Mort and Ramon, and I enjoyed seeing them again.  Having Ken and Sandy interact with other recurring characters adds an extra dimension to the story.

I really enjoyed this one.

In Ken Holt #16, The Clue of the Silver Scorpion, Ken and Sandy begin to have random mishaps.  Someone damages their car.  While the car is being repaired, someone breaks into the garage.  Two men try to hold up the boys on a country road.  The boys are undecided whether the events are connected until the men abduct them, wanting them to give something back.

I like this passage from page 21.
"Let's give it up," Sandy suggested. "Neither of us has the slightest idea of what he was trying to do, or why. And we never will."

"I guess not. We'll just have to file it away among 'Unusual Incidents,' " Ken said.

Sandy sighed. "Sometimes I think that practically everything that happens to us is unusual."
There is no doubt about that.

It's interesting how very little I remembered about some of these books upon this reading.  I had no memory of the plot of this book during most of my reading of this book.  In fact, at one point I questioned whether I had read the book before.  I knew I must have, since I was certain that I had the complete set when I read the books before.  It was not until I reached the scene where the boys were hiding in the house and Ken called the police quietly on the phone that I remembered that scene. It's like the last few chapters were the only part of the story that made an impression on me before.

This book flows quite well, and I greatly enjoyed it.

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