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The story is one of Baum's rare ventures into the adult detective and crime fiction genre. It is a sort of Sherlock Holmes tale simplified, and less dark than Baum's "The Suicide of Kiaros." Baum wrote little that can be called straight crime fiction; yet the detective genre enriched much of the juvenile fiction for male and female audiences that Baum wrote in his mature years, especially in the Aunt Jane's Nieces and Mary Louise series.