Adrian Alington

The Amazing Test Match Crime

Chatto & Windus 1939
Jacket design by Donovan Lloyd

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ALINGTON is never happier than when engaged in light satire. It is his Jortt, and he Invariably brings it off. The Vanishing Celebrities was an excellent piece of foolery, and his new book is every bit as good. His readers will remember from past books his feelings about cricket. Here they are let loose. The scene opens in one of this author's particular brand of Continental resorts. Three dastardly crooks, the Professor (very foreign), an American gunman, and Ralph the Disappointment, a renegade public-school boy, are plotting the most horrible crime, which they believe will stir the British Empire more than a major war. They are going to wreck the next Test match. We are then taken to an English village. The squire's son is the English captain, the rector's daughter (always swinging things about) is in love with the newly discovered demon bowler, son of very lowly and rude peasants who wring a living from the soil. The plot thickens, and -sure enough the English innings opens with incredible drama. The first two batsmen, pride of their country, fall asleep at the wicket, doped. Other complications swiftly follow. The police chiefs are called in, and how the match is ended has to be read to be disbelieved. The Australians are not in England this summer, but Mr. Alington's new story is a very good substitute. Those for whom cricket is a bore will laugh like Little Audrey ; while even those for whom it is a passion could scarce forbear to cheer.

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