Dr. Richard Kellogg, professor of psychology at Alfred State College, is the author of an article appearing in the most recent issue of The Baker Street Journal. Titled "The Case-Book of Prince Zaleski," the article reviews the life of British writer M. P. Shiel and discusses his most famous literary creation, the brilliant detective Prince Zaleski.
M. P. Shiel (1865-1947) was a native of the West Indies who specialized in writing mysteries and science fiction stories. He received the most critical acclaim for writing the futuristic novel The Purple Cloud, which was published in 1901. This book about the extermination of the human race came to the screen in 1959 after being retitled The World, the Flesh, and the Devil. This dark and controversial film starred Harry Belafonte, Mel Ferrer, and Inger Stevens. Kellogg notes that Shiel eventually became notorious for his hatred of all organized religions and for the blatant racism which is apparent throughout his many books. Prince Zaleski(1895) was Shiel's first book and it contains three remarkable detective stories. The hero is a reclusive and eccentric Russian prince who is surrounded by precious gems and rare antiquities in a decaying English abbey. An inveterate user of hashish, the Bohemian prince is able to solve the most baffling of mysteries by a combination of intuition and his astounding powers of observation and deduction. During the Victorian Age, Prince Zaleski was among the most popular fictional detectives in England and the United States.
Kellogg has written frequently on mystery writers and detective fiction for both popular and professional publications. His undergraduate studies were completed at Alfred State College and SUNY at Geneseo. He joined the Alfred State College faculty in 1970 after receiving his doctorate in educational psychology from the University of Rochester.