Alias Basil Willing by Helen McCloy (1951)

Basil Willing follows a flustered customer out of his local tobacconist’s and hears him hail a cab using the name of Basil Willing. Intrigued Basil follows him to his destination and enters into his latest adventure.

I wanted to read some McCloy before Bodies from the Library and picked this up on the basis of the above hook because it sounds so promising and the hands of a different writer perhaps it would be.

For me overall it just wasn’t very interesting and a key element is a preposterous secret code that could be easily have been misinterpreted with fatal consequences. So actually, Alas Basil Willing.

There is however a relief sometimes to find an author that you don’t get on with so as not to worry about increasing the TBR pile any further!

Vintage Mystery Challenge

Fulfils “What – Person’s name in the title”.




3 thoughts on “Alias Basil Willing by Helen McCloy (1951)”

  1. I’ve had a problematic time with McCloy. Very much enjoyed Mr. Splitfoot, sort of enjoyed Through a Glass Darkly, detested The Slayer and the Slain, and haven’t been able to get more than about 25% through anything else by her. Might try some of her short fiction next instead, because at least they’e (hopefully) quick, and might help me acclimatise. But it;s nice to find a kindred soul on these matters sometimes!


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