Cynthia Manson (Editor) // Mystery For Halloween

She was an old cat, coal black, lean and ugly. Her right ear had been chewed and her old hide showed scars, but she had a regal look when she sat under the rosebushes in the plaza and surveyed us with yellow-green eyes.

~ “The Black Cat” by Lee Somerville

Title:  Mystery For Halloween 
Author:  Cynthia Manson (Editor), Lawrence Treat, Terry Bacon, Alan Ryan, Pauline C. Smith, Janet O’Daniel, Andrew Klavan, Theodore H. Hoffman, George Sumner Albee, Richard F. McGonegal, Elliott Capon, Edward D. Hoch, David Braly, Richard Ciciarelli, Dashiell Hammett, Lee Somerville, Donald E. Westlake
Publisher: Signet, 1991

Mystery for Halloween is an anthology of sixteen short stories, all of which were published in either Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine or Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine


  • A suspense-filled book to carry in your bag to the doctor’s office or anywhere else you’ll be waiting at for a while. This is an entertaining selection of stories written by both well- and lesser-known authors.

A few of the stories I enjoyed most in this anthology were:

“Kiss the Vampire Goodbye” by Alan Ryan: A pretty girl walks into a detective’s office and tells him her father has been killed by a vampire, and now his body is missing.

“Fun and Games at the Whacks Museum” by Elliott Capon: The town wax museum is being shut down, and someone’s mad enough to kill over it.

“The Theft of the Halloween Pumpkin” by Edward D. Hoch: A thief for hire accepts a job to steal a jack o’lantern from a rich man’s porch.

“The Black Cat” by Lee Somerville: Crime stalks a small town’s Heritage Festival.

“This Is Death” by Donald E. Westlake: A man decides to commit suicide, but isn’t prepared for the consequences.

The mystery stories in this anthology don’t all have a Halloween theme (for some reason, I thought they would). Some take place on Halloween, others do not. Some have supernatural elements, others do not. Some are great, others are less so, but none are disappointing. No tricks here, only treats. 











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