Samuel Hopkins Adams by Average Jones
How Average Jones Solved Mysteries with Ads: A Review of Samuel Hopkins Adams’ Classic Detective Stories
If you’re a fan of detective stories, you’ve probably heard of Sherlock Holmes, Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple, and other famous sleuths. But have you ever heard of Average Jones? He’s the protagonist of a series of stories by Samuel Hopkins Adams, an American writer and journalist who lived from 1871 to 1958. Adams was best known for his investigative journalism and muckraking, exposing corruption and fraud in various industries. He also wrote fiction, including historical novels, romance novels, and mystery stories. One of his most popular works was Average Jones, a collection of ten stories that first appeared in Success magazine in 1910 and 1911, and were later published as a book in 1911.
Average Jones is not your typical detective. He doesn’t have a magnifying glass, a pipe, or a deerstalker hat. He doesn’t have a sidekick, a nemesis, or a police contact. He doesn’t even have a catchy name. He’s just Average Jones, an ordinary young man with an extraordinary talent for solving problems. He’s also independently wealthy, which allows him to pursue his hobby of being an “Ad-Visor”, a specialist who helps people who are puzzled or troubled by classified advertisements. He believes that ads are “the most fascinating and significant subject in the world”, and that they can reveal clues to human nature, hidden motives, and mysterious events.
In each story, Average Jones encounters a different case involving an ad, either by chance or by request. He then uses his keen observation, logical reasoning, and creative thinking to figure out the meaning and the source of the ad, and to unravel the mystery behind it. Along the way, he meets various characters, some friendly and some hostile, some honest and some deceptive, some ordinary and some eccentric. He also faces various challenges, such as danger, deception, disguise, and distraction. He often relies on his wit, his charm, and his humor to get out of tricky situations. He also sometimes falls in love, but he never lets romance interfere with his work.
The stories are set in New York City and other locations in the United States at the turn of the 20th century. They reflect the social and cultural changes that were happening at the time, such as urbanization, industrialization, immigration, consumerism, and media. They also showcase Adams’ knowledge of various topics, such as politics, business, science, art, literature, history, and law. They are full of interesting facts, trivia, slang, and references that make them both educational and entertaining.
The stories are also very well-written. They have catchy titles that capture the essence of the plot. They have engaging openings that hook the reader’s attention. They have clear structures that follow the classic formula of introduction, complication, climax, and resolution. They have crisp dialogues that reveal the personality and the relationship of the characters. They have vivid descriptions that create a sense of place and atmosphere. They have clever twists that surprise and delight the reader. And they have satisfying endings that wrap up the story neatly.
Why You Should Read Average Jones by Samuel Hopkins Adams
You might be wondering why you should read a book that was written over a hundred years ago, about a detective who uses ads to solve mysteries. Well, there are many reasons why Average Jones is still worth reading today. Here are some of them:
- It’s fun and entertaining. The stories are full of humor, suspense, action, and romance. They will keep you guessing and laughing until the end. You will enjoy following Average Jones as he outsmarts his opponents, escapes from danger, and wins the hearts of beautiful women.
- It’s original and creative. The stories are unlike any other detective stories you’ve ever read. They use ads as the main source of clues and puzzles, which makes them unique and intriguing. You will be amazed by how Adams came up with such clever and varied plots based on simple and seemingly harmless ads.
- It’s informative and educational. The stories are not only entertaining, but also enlightening. They teach you a lot about the history, culture, and society of the early 20th century America. You will learn about the politics, business, science, art, literature, and law of that era. You will also learn about the slang, idioms, expressions, and references that were used at that time.
- It’s relevant and relatable. The stories are not only historical, but also contemporary. They deal with issues and themes that are still important and interesting today. You will find parallels between the problems and challenges that Average Jones faced and the ones that you face in your own life. You will also find similarities between the characters and situations that Average Jones encountered and the ones that you encounter in your own world.
How to Read Average Jones by Samuel Hopkins Adams
If you’re convinced that Average Jones is a book that you should read, you might be wondering how to read it. Here are some tips and suggestions that can help you enjoy the book more:
- Read it online or offline. You can find the book online for free on various websites, such as Project Gutenberg or Internet Archive. You can also buy a physical copy or an e-book version from various online or offline stores, such as Amazon or Barnes & Noble. Choose the format that suits your preference and convenience.
- Read it in order or out of order. You can read the book in the order that it was published, starting from “The Man Higher Up” and ending with “The Lost Blend”. You can also read the book in any order that you like, skipping or jumping from one story to another. Each story is self-contained and independent, so you don’t have to worry about missing any continuity or connection.
- Read it with or without annotations. You can read the book as it is, without any additional explanation or commentary. You can also read the book with some annotations or notes that can help you understand the context and the meaning of the book better. You can find some annotations online, such as on Wikipedia or Shmoop. You can also make your own annotations as you read along.
- Read it alone or with others. You can read the book by yourself, at your own pace and time. You can also read the book with others, such as your friends or family members. You can share your thoughts and opinions about the book with them, and listen to theirs. You can also join a book club or an online forum that discusses the book with other readers from around the world.
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Here are some frequently asked questions about Average Jones by Samuel Hopkins Adams:
- Q: Who is Samuel Hopkins Adams?
- A: Samuel Hopkins Adams was an American writer and journalist who lived from 1871 to 1958. He was best known for his investigative journalism and muckraking, exposing corruption and fraud in various industries. He also wrote fiction, including historical novels, romance novels, and mystery stories.
- Q: Who is Average Jones?
- A: Average Jones is the protagonist of a series of detective stories by Samuel Hopkins Adams. He is an ordinary young man with an extraordinary talent for solving problems. He is also an “Ad-Visor”, a specialist who helps people who are puzzled or troubled by classified advertisements.
- Q: What are classified advertisements?
- A: Classified advertisements are short messages that are published in newspapers or magazines, usually under specific categories or headings, such as “For Sale”, “Wanted”, “Lost”, “Found”, etc. They are used by people who want to buy, sell, rent, hire, announce, request, offer, or communicate something.
- Q: How many stories are there in Average Jones?
- A: There are ten stories in Average Jones. They are:
- The Man Higher Up
- The Mystery of a Taxi Cab
- The Million-Dollar Dog
- The Great Cipher
- The Bradshaw Mystery
- The Man Who Spoke Latin
- The Purple Emperor
- The Adventure of the Scientific Cracksman
- The Treasure-Train
- The Lost Blend
- Q: What are some of the themes and topics that are explored in Average Jones?
- A: Some of the themes and topics that are explored in Average Jones are:
- The power and influence of the media and advertising
- The diversity and complexity of human nature and behavior
- The role and responsibility of journalism and ethics
- The impact and challenge of social and cultural changes
- The value and importance of curiosity and creativity
Average Jones by Samuel Hopkins Adams is a classic collection of detective stories that features a clever sleuth who uses classified ads to crack cases. It is a book that is fun, original, informative, and relevant. It is a book that you should read if you love detective stories, or if you want to learn more about the history, culture, and society of the early 20th century America. It is a book that you can read online or offline, in order or out of order, with or without annotations, alone or with others. It is a book that will entertain, educate, and inspire you.
I hope you enjoyed this article and found it helpful. If you have any questions or comments about the book or the article, feel free to leave them below. Thank you for reading! 😊
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