The Radio Boys Trailing a Voice; or Solving a Wireless Mystery is the fifth volume in Grosset & Dunlap’s “The Radio Boys Series,” written by Allen Chapman (pseud.) and including a foreword by Jack Binns, a radio expert of the time. The boys in this series are followed in their daily lives, school activities, adventures and scuffles, and of course their enthusiastic radio pursuits. In this story the boys are listening to a live concert on the radio when it’s interrupted by a private message coming through their headphones. The words are in code, but they recognize the speaker as an unsavory local character. The message leads them to the pursuit of a criminal gang and other adventures along the way.
In radio’s early, experimental days of the 1920s there were two major series of juvenile fiction identically titled The Radio Boys; this Grosset & Dunlap series was the trademarked The Radio Boys and is the more juvenile and commercial of the two series. Allen Chapman was a pseudonym assigned by the Stratemeyer Syndicate to anonymous authors, while the Burt series was credited to its actual author, Gerald Breckenridge, who was a journalist and author of a couple of books for adults. The actual authors behind the Allen Chapman name seem to have been John William Duffield and Howard R. Garis, who collectively wrote hundreds of books for the Stratemeyer Syndicate. The Syndicate was run by Edward Stratemeyer and produced over 100 series and well over 1000 titles including such legendary series as Tom Swift, Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys.
There were additional minor radio-themed series, not particularly successful, but there was also a well-written series published by Cupples & Leon Company written about girls in radio, titled appropriately The Radio Girls.
Book publisher: Grosset & Dunlap, New York
Book copyright: 1922
Book edition: First edition, early printing
Pages: 214 (230 bound pages)
Size: 5″ x 7-5/8″
Dust jacket: Yes, color
Illustrations: Glossy frontispiece
Back matter: 8 pages of series listings from A.L. Burt Company
Digital edition © 2008 Curtis Philips. All Rights Reserved.