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The Drums Of Jeopardy
by Harold Macgrath
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Harold MacGrath (1871-1932) was a bestselling American novelist, short story writer, and screenwriter. As a young man, he worked as a reporter and columnist on the Syracuse Herald newspaper until the late 1890s when he published his first novel, a romance titled Arms and the Woman (1899). According to the New York Times, his next book, The Puppet Crown (1901) was the No.7 bestselling book in the United States in 1901. From that point on, MacGrath never looked back, writing novels for the mass market about love, adventure, mystery, spies, and the like at an average rate of more than one a year. He would have three more of his books that were among the top ten bestselling books of the year. At the same time, he penned a number of short stories for major American magazines such as The Saturday Evening Post, Ladies Home Journal, and Red Book magazine. Several of MacGrath's novels were serialized in these magazines and contributing to them was something he would continue to do until his death in 1932.
A fast train drew into Albany, on the New York Central, from the West. It was three-thirty of a chill March morning in the first year of peace. A pall of fog lay over the world so heavy that it beaded the face and hands and deposited a fairy diamond dust upon wool. The station lights had the visibility of stars, and like the stars were without refulgence - a pale golden aureola, perhaps three feet in diameter, and beyond, nothing.
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