The Ragtime Fool
Poisoned Pen, 2010 (2010)
Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth
he Ragtime Fool
is the third and last of author Larry Karp's
series. I've enjoyed the series and wish there were more forthcoming. Karp, who has a medical background, also writes
The Music Box
mystery series featuring Dr. Thomas Purdue.
run Campbell, the only white man Scott Joplin ever taught, is working to establish Joplin's legacy as the one who developed Ragtime music. He learns (this is 1951) that a journal that Joplin kept is up for sale. He wants to acquire this book in order to help prove what a treasure Joplin was.
wo Sedalia, Missouri Klansmen do not want the journal to surface. There might be things written in there that would be detrimental to their wellbeing. Along comes Alan Chandler, a seventeen-year-old boy who can play Ragtime like Joplin did. He wants to attend a ceremony honoring the pianist and would like Campbell to give him lessons.
nough plot. Believe me, it's a good one. Kept me reading long after I should have turned out my light. The characters develop themselves as the story progresses. I did have one little problem. Several characters shared a first initial, making keeping them straight onerous for me.
hat's a minor – very minor – issue. The book is worth a read, not only for the historical personages that emerge to mingle with the fictitious ones; a lesson in 1950s Southern history also finds its way into the engrossing story.
Note: Opinions expressed in reviews and articles on this site are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of BookLoons.
Find more Mystery books on our
or in our book