Like Raskin's Westing (see below), amateur archaeologist Alpheus Winterborn is one of those millionaires of fiction who delight in mystifying survivors with cryptic treasure hunts. And Anthony, whose father has a heart attack early on and whose mother is obsessively insecure about money, is determined to find the rumored treasure. He comes upon the first clue accidentally while dusting the library which old Winterborn had financed; and from then on Anthony and his librarian friend Miss Eells pursue leads and misleads, hassled all the while by the ruthless competition of a Winterborn nephew, banker Hugo Philpotts. Bellairs ends extravagantly with the rest of downtown evacuated for an expected flood; Philpotts overhearing Anthony's guess as to the treasure's location; an injured Miss Eells out cold in the library; Anthony seeking help but Philpotts instead forcing him up the steeple to fetch the treasure; Anthony banging for the fire department, which arrives with the town in tow; and the treasure, now Anthony's, revealed as an angel from the ark of the covenant. Even though the old statue's identity is never absolutely certified, a more modest find--not to mention a less melodramatic finale--would better suit the story. Nevertheless, Bellairs drops clues and plants obstacles tidily enough to give mystery fans a run for their money.