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|Girls' Crystal Annual.
The Girl's Crystal Annual was first published in 1939 with the usual mix of girls stories written by the male A. P. staff and lasted into the late seventies gradually changing through the Fifties into picture strip form. Copies of the first four issues are extremely difficult to find.
A major attraction of the early Girls' Crystal Annual was the Noel Raymond series of detective stories written by "Peter Langley" (Ronald Fleming) which ran for a number of years. It was unusual on 3 points: first the lead character was a male in a girls paper full of girl heroines, secondly Fleming used a male pseudonym, almost unheard of in the girls papers, and thirdly - quite often the reader didn't know who the guilty party was until the very end!
Some of the stories were taken from the Girls Crystal, a weekly storypaper first published in 1935.
For the January 1994 Collectors' Digest Dennis Bird wrote an article providing some background to Ronald Fleming - you can read it here.
You can see some of the cover illustrations here.
|Year||Noel Raymond Story||Source|
|1940||The Vanished Schoolgirl|
|1941||The Schoolgirl Detective|
|Noel and that Strange Umbrella|
|1942||The Clue Of The Chocolate Biscuits|
|1943||The Mystery Of The Locked Belfry||GC 163 03.12.38|
|1944||The Trail Of False Clues||GC 186 13.05.39|
|1945||The Black Pirate's Threat||GC 255 07.09.40|
|1946||Noel's Four-Footed Assistant||GC 227 24.02.40|
|1947||The Puzzle Of The Yuletide Doll|
|1948||Mystery At The Art School|
|1949||The Trail Of The Mystery Parcel|
|1950||The Mystery Of The Museum [strip]|
|1951||The Mystery Of The Circus Ape|
|1952||Noel's Riverside Mystery [strip]|
|1953||Noel's Strange Seaside Find [strip]|