The Missing Chapter
Baker & Taylor
Nero Wolfe and Archie Goodwin investigate the suspicious apparent suicide of an irritable writer who was hired to continue a popular mystery series, in a case full of jealousy, ambition, and deadly extortion
Blackwell North Amer
Robert Goldsborough returns with his seventh stunning Nero Wolfe novel. Follow along into Wolfe's famed West Thirty-fifth Street brownstone, where the corpulent orchid-tending genius devours meals, books, and murderers with a passion - and where this time he gets the chance to send a writer's killer to the pen.
Charles Childress, the author tapped to continue the beloved Sergeant Barnstable detective stories when the originator died, may not have been the most gifted writer in the world, but he did have his talents...Contentious, combative, and exceedingly vengeful, Childress had an unsurpassed way of making enemies. Which is why, when the police write off his death as suicide, his publisher, Horace Vinson, comes to Nero Wolfe. Vinson knows all too well that in the cutthroat world of publishing, the competition can be murder.
Wolfe, however; is not so easily convinced...or distracted from his more genteel pursuits. After all, the evidence does conform to the official version of the killing: The gun found at the crime scene not only belonged to the victim but bore only his fingerprints. Perhaps Childress finally contrived a successful climax...as the author of his own death.
But Archie Goodwin, Wolfe's ever-faithful friend and partner; points out that Vinson's fee would keep the big man in beer and bouillabaisse for some time to come. That is a reality Nero Wolfe can't refuse, and soon Archie is posing questions that turn up a whole cast of character assassins, including Childress's ex-editor and agent, his most scathing critic, and his icily beautiful, ambitious fiancee - each of whom would have taken great pleasure in writing the final chapter in the life of Charles Childress.
And then, in a plot twist any auteur would envy, Archie gets wind of the involvement of a mysterious kissing cousin from Childress's past. Could this be a case of a small-town girl come to right an old wrong? It's a conundrum so novel even the reluctant Nero Wolfe can't resist...as extortion, deceit, and jealousy come together in a perfect potboiler of revenge - and murder.
Nero Wolfe and Archie Goodwin return to investigate the suspicious apparent suicide of an irritable writer who was hired to continue a popular mystery series, in a case full of jealousy, ambition, and deadly extortion.
New York : Bantam Books, c1994
229 p. ; 22 cm