THE ALFRED HITCHCOCK MURDER CASE by George Baxt

THE ALFRED HITCHCOCK MURDER CASE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Another rehashing of other writers' plots (Process of Elimination, 1984), this one using real-life identities as well. Thus we have young Alfred Hitchcock directing a movie in 1925 Munich, assisted by future wife Alma. Script-girl Anna Grieban and mood-musician Rudolph Wagner are stabbed to death before the film's completion, and Wagner's homely daughter Rosie disappears. Motive, murderer and Rosie are never found. Switch to London, 1936. Hitchcock is well established, about to start work on The Lady Vanishes when a message from Freddie Regner, scriptwriter on the German movie, now a refugee in England, throws his life into chaos. There's a body on his doorstep; Alma is kidnapped, and Hitchcock, dogged by a persistent blonde reporter, chases through the countryside in pursuit of a double agent. Echoes of Buchan, le CarrÉ Ambler, etc. abound. There are patches of suspense, a frenetic pace and a clever surprise at the finish--but the satire here is arch and strained; the intrusion of real names a steady irritant. Baxt has been better.

Pub Date: March 31st, 1986
Publisher: St. Martin's