Books: Charley Who?

LITTLE CHARLEY ROSS by Norman Zierold. 304 pages. Little, Brown. $5.95.

Any connoisseur of mysteries knows that the unsolved ones are best. They command the imagination far more powerfully than the most neatly solved crimes. "What ever happened to Judge Crater?" provoked a number of literary discussions without drawing the judge into the open. In this well-documented addition to the annals of crime, a New York freelance writer now asks, "What ever happened to Charley Ross?"

The first question should be, "Who was Charley Ross anyway?" In 1874, Charley was the fetching four-year-old son of a Philadelphia dry-goods merchant. On a drowsy July...

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