Introduction On Racism Epigraphs A History of the Pulps A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Glossary and Character Taxonomy Breakdown by Country of Origin Bibliography Table of Contents The Best of the Encyclopedia
St. Clair, Maisie. Maisie St. Clair was created by “Nell Martin,” the pseudonym of Nell Columbia Boyer Martin, and appeared in fourteen stories in Top-Notch Magazine from 1924 to 1928, beginning with “Law Made to Order” (Top-Notch Magazine, June 15, 1924).
Maisie St. Clair is the child of a pair of circus performers, but she had bigger things in mind and went to work for the law firm of Judge George Dorsey. St. Clair's relationship with the Judge is an uneasy one. She is not a good office worker: she mixes up files, she tells off surly or uncooperative customers (or the Judge himself), and in general acts like herself, which is to say like a spunky flapper with little time or patience for the sobriety of law work. The Judge fires her roughly once a week. However, she inevitably proves herself too useful to him to stay fired for long. When, for example, the Judge gets fooled by a pretty swindler, it is St. Clair who rescues him by revealing the woman’s crimes. St. Clair is unprofessional, but can move in a hurry when she needs to and is nobody's fool.
* I'm including the Maisie St. Clair stories in the Best of the Encyclopedia list because they are well-written and fun. Nell Martin specialized in light-hearted mysteries as a writer, and her Maisie St. Clair stories are some of her best work. St. Clair is well-characterized, her exchanges with customers and the Judge are quite amusing, the mysteries are appropriately well-plotted and mysterious, and as a whole the stories are very entertaining and raise a number of smiles on the readers' faces. Recommended.
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