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Taylor, Phoebe Atwood

Page history last edited by Jon 12 years ago

Phoebe Atwood TaylorSource: Wikipedia


Phoebe Atwood Taylor (1909–1976) was an American mystery author. She was born in Boston and educated at Barnard College New York. She married Dr Grantly Walden Taylor and was a full-time writer from 1931. She wrote mystery novels under her own name, and as Freeman Dana and Alice Tilton. Her first novel, The Cape Cod Mystery, introduced the "Codfish Sleuth", Asey Mayo, who became a regular character, appearing in 24 novels. Her work was light in tone, fun and easy to read, reminiscent of Craig Rice. She borrowed heavily from her own background (being born in Boston, and very familiar with Cape Cod) to produce books full of local color.


She adopted the pseudonyms of 'Freeman Dana' and 'Alice Tilton' for her other books as her publisher did not want her known as a writer of potboilers. Like many people who lived through the Great Depression she was in constant need of money, and one of her letters to her publisher was printed in a recent edition of one of her books as an explanation of why she adopted Alice Tilton for the popular Leonidas Witherall novels. The early Witherall novels are of interest for their depiction of the Depression - the main character has lost all of his money due to the crash, and takes to writing "Pot Boilers" as a means of survival, while solving murders as a sideline.


Phoebe Atwood Taylor is almost unknown today, but Countryman Press has reissued several of her books.




Asey Mayo


The Cape Cod Mystery (1931)

Death Lights a Candle (1932)

The Mystery of the Cape Cod Players (1933)

The Mystery of the Cape Cod Tavern (1934)

Sandbar Sinister (1934)

Deathblow Hill (1935)

The Tinkling Symbol (1935)

The Crimson Patch (1936)

Out of Order (1936)

Figure Away (1937)

Octagon House (1937)

The Annulet of Gilt (1938)

Banbury Bog (1938)

Spring Harrowing (1939)

The Criminal COD (1940)

The Deadly Sunshade (1940)

The Perennial Boarder (1941)

The Six Iron Spiders (1942)

Three Plots For Asey Mayo {Novelets} (1942)

Going, Going, Gone (1943)

Proof of the Pudding (1943)

The Asey Mayo Trio {Novelets} (1946)

Punch With Care (1946)

Diplomatic Corpse (1951)


As Freeman Dana


Murder at the New York World's Fair (1938)


As Alice Tilton


Beginning with a Bash (1937)

The Cut Direct (1938)

Cold Steal (1939)

The Left Leg (1940)

The Hollow Chest (1941)

File for Record (1943)

Dead Ernest (1944)

The Iron Clew (1947) aka The Iron Hand


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