The Santa Claus Bank Robbery

by A. C. Greene. Knopf, $6.95. A reconstruction, admittedly requiring some guesswork by Mr. Greene, of what must surely have been the most muddleheaded robbery in history. It took place on December 23, 1927, in Cisco, Texas. The robbers, three exconvicts and an amateur recruit, did everything wrong, from using a Santa Claus mask that attracted a tail of kids, to mislaying the loot. In spite of its comic aspects, the affair is a gruesome piece of last frontier Americana. Mr. Greene’s style is utilitarian, but his story is chilling.