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(11/03/2008) The Blank Page by K. C. Constantine. New York. 1974. Saturday Review Press/Dutton. keywords: Mystery America. 150 pages. Jacket design by Roy Kuhlman. 0841503354.

FROM THE PUBLISHER -

   It was hot. The temperature on Memorial Day had tied the record set in 1910. In the five days since, the weather report was notable for its sameness. When Miss Cynthia Summer called to say that she hadn't seen one of her student roomers, Police Chief Mario Balzic was glad to stop working on the budget report. But then he saw Janet Pisula's body on the floor of her room. She had been strangled with her brassiere about a week before and lay next to the bed dressed only in her underpants. There was a blank sheet of typing paper lying on her stomach. As the investigation begins the facts seem almost nonexistent. The faculty of the Rocksburg junior college are not much help-particularly when Mario interrupts their end-of-the-year bash. He does learn from Janet's uncle that she had suffered brain damage in a car accident that killed her parents eleven years ago, and after that became painfully shy. Her uncle thought that she had become more outgoing at the junior college, but as Balzic tries to question her friends, he finds that she has made none, that Janet has talked to almost no one. The sheet of paper left on the girl's stomach remains an enigma. Balzic spends late hours at Muscotti's bar with Father Marazo and Mo Valcanas trying to figure out a motive. It isn't until the next day that Balzic gets even a glimmer of why Janet Pisula is dead. THE BLANK PAGE is the third mystery novel American writer K. C. Constantine has written about the Rocksburg, Pennsylvania police chief. Both of his earlier books, THE ROCKSBURG RAILROAD MURDERS and THE MAN WHO LIKED TO LOOK AT HIMSELF, were well received by those who like good crime novels.

 

 

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