Books: Short Notices: Jun. 10, 1966

THE DETECTIVE by Roderick Thorp. 598 pages. Dial. $5.95.

Those who pursue this detective story to its finish may be reminded of a Rube Goldberg invention, not because it is comically ingenious but because the elaborate machinery of its plot does not justify the picayune results. The awesome bulk of Author Thorp's contraption is achieved by extraneous detail; he is one of those authors who, having informed the reader that some character has picked up a phone, cannot get on with the story before informing the reader that the character has put the phone down. Thorp, his publisher and the Literary...