Anyway, this charming book was written in 1912 and the girls start a small newspaper while summering in Milville where, in an episode directly from Baum's own experiences as editor and publisher for the Aberdeen Saturday Pioneer, a simple typographical error leads to a pistol duel between the offended party and the hapless editor with comic results. This Baum scene can be viewed in the television movie "Dreamer Of Oz" starring John Ritter which right now is available in the "70th Anniversary Box Set of Wizard Of Oz".
Anyhow this book introduces us to two new character's in the series a Ms. Hetty Hewitt who is a New York City resident and newspaper artist who is brought to Melville by Uncle John's banker to do the art work for the paper. Ms. Hewitt is somewhat of a Bohemian who is sent there in essence "to detox" as we would say today. Also a Mr. Thursday Smith who suffers from amnesia for the last two years after a severe bump on the head and is trying to figure out who he is.
The amnesia theme seems to be a popular one with Baum-- a man not knowing his background, who he was and so on, but there it is fresh and new with a brand new mystery to solve with a very surprising twist ending which I do not want to give away.
There is also some trouble in Milville over at the new Paper Mill as well and the roughnecks who work there which develop into one of the most "violent" stories I have read by Baum in a long while. Again not wanting to give it away it does involve a gun shot and a drunken hooligan!
The book continues with Uncle John, Beth De Graf, Patsy Doyle Louise Merrick Wheldon and her husband Arthur Wheldon. Charming dialogue, country bumpkins and all kind of fun ensues.