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Murder By the Book | [Rex Stout]

Murder By the Book

Leonard Dyke's writing style didn't offend. But all of his work featured unhappy endings: murders. When four people die, including the author, police finally call on Nero Wolfe. Wolfe baits a trap, and when it springs shut, he finds that truth is stranger (and bloodier) than fiction.
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Publisher's Summary

Leonard Dyke's writing style didn't offend. But all of his work featured unhappy endings: murders. When four people die, including the author, police finally call on Nero Wolfe. Wolfe baits a trap, and when it springs shut, he finds that truth is stranger (and bloodier) than fiction.

Stout fellow: listen to all of our Nero Wolfe mysteries, including classic radio programs!

©1951 Rex Stout; (P)1995 Books on Tape Inc.

What the Critics Say

"It's always a treat to read a Nero Wolfe mystery. The man has entered our folklore." (The New York Times)
"What's not to like about a Nero Wolfe mystery? The mysteries are short, cleverly plotted, well paced, and, if you're an audiobook listener, wonderfully read by Michael Prichard....Prichard has read nearly 20 books in Stout's series and has mastered Wolfe's deep, meditative voice and Archie's spry, chipper voice, as well as those of a host of other characters we recognize from one recording to the next." (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (157 )
5 star
 (87)
4 star
 (48)
3 star
 (18)
2 star
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1 star
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Overall
4.4 (100 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
4.6 (98 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    M. W. Baker right here 04-21-07
    M. W. Baker right here 04-21-07 Member Since 2006

    Mags

    HELPFUL VOTES
    16
    ratings
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    10
    4
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    Overall
    "Good stuff"

    Michael Pritchard is one of the best voices out there for audiobooks and he's perfect for Nero Wolfe mysteries. This one has a pretty good plot and is worth a listen.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Linda PITTSBURGH, PA, United States 11-03-12
    Linda PITTSBURGH, PA, United States 11-03-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    111
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    520
    69
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    FOLLOWING
    21
    8
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    Story
    "Truly one of the best"

    I read all Rex Stouts books in the 70s, but fortunately I've forgotten most of them. I love them all, but this plot is particularly good.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen Vacaville, CA, USA 12-19-07
    Stephen Vacaville, CA, USA 12-19-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    50
    ratings
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    39
    17
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    0
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    Overall
    "A fun read"

    Rex Stout had an amazing way with words. His stories are fun, witty, and all around well written. And, as read by Michael Pritchard they truly come alive. All of them are gems and this one is no exception!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Walnut Creek, CA, United States 11-26-13
    Michael Walnut Creek, CA, United States 11-26-13 Member Since 2002

    I focus on fiction, sci-fi, fantasy, science, history, politics and read a lot. I try to review everything I read.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3145
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1385
    395
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    955
    9
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Stout"

    This was another particularly excellent Nero Wolfe novel. One of the best I have listened to. The narration, as usual, was great. The story keeps moving and keeps interesting and fun. The plot has some of the most interesting twists and enjoyable character development of any of the Nero Wolfe novels. This one is worth reading more than once.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Giorgi Trenton, NJ 02-26-12
    M. Giorgi Trenton, NJ 02-26-12 Member Since 2009

    Tiger Rose

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    364
    5
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    "What can I say, no one writes like Rex Stout."
    Where does Murder By the Book rank among all the audiobooks you???ve listened to so far?

    I listen to Rex Stout audiobooks over and over again. I go to sleep listening to one and wake up listening to another. Just a little obsessive. Good stuff.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I smile at the banter between Nero and Archie. The reader is quite good.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rebekah Reading, PA, United States 12-12-11
    Rebekah Reading, PA, United States 12-12-11 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    49
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    157
    26
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    4
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    Performance
    Story
    "If you love a mystery, here's 4"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I love the character Nero Wolfe and Archie Goodwin. I love the way Rex Stoudt puts dialog in Archie's mouth and Archie's little 'get even' tactics with Wolfe. Wolfe is a wonderful crazy genius and he and I both love orchids. This book, written in 1958 also is a lot of fun from the perspective of knowing they didn't have at their disposal the things we now have at our disposal. It's a lovely little time capsule so well done it's fun. Of course I also am a big fan of old black and white movies. The Narrator does a very good job and my intent is to savor each and everyone of the Nero Wolfe's.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Actually, I'm not crazy about short stories but as they go, these were fun. Wolfe ends up solving all four mysteries for free. You'll have to listen to find out why


    What does Michael Prichard bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    My mother, an avid reader, introduced me to Nero Wolfe in the written form and when the series was on TV with Timothy Hutton, I was entranced by it. It brought me closer to her and a time when she influenced me. As to which is better eyes or ears... I happen to think that the same part of my brain is engaged whether I read with my eyes or my ears. Michael indeed does an excellent job of portraying Nero and Archie as well as the other recurring players. It's a delightful light listen that keeps you trying to beat Nero to the solution.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    WriterGirl Washington, D.C. 08-19-09
    WriterGirl Washington, D.C. 08-19-09 Member Since 2003

    WriterGirl

    HELPFUL VOTES
    127
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    69
    46
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    3
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    Overall
    "Very good, with good ending"

    This is typical Archie Goodwin, the physical end of Nero Wolfe. I listened to this all night while sitting up on a train. I couldn't fall asleep until I knew whodunit. What happens in California will keep you guessing, for nothing is what it seems. Not RS's best, but very good.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Scott Santa Clara, CA, United States 07-10-14
    Scott Santa Clara, CA, United States 07-10-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    41
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    62
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    "Not quite up to modern scrutiny"

    Okay—a decent detective novel, pretty well written, and pretty well read.
    Still, there's something old-fashioned about the writing—it's not quite as crisp or as tight as one might like.
    That aside, the characters are fun, the situations interesting, and there's enough action to keep it going.
    Michael Prichard's reading is mostly inoffensive, which I gather is high praise from the likes of me, but his rich bass voice doesn't match all the characters well. His interpretation of Nero Wolf, however, is spot on.
    Overall, this audiobook is a decent companion, as long as there's something else to do while listening to it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    G. Griggs 03-26-13
    G. Griggs 03-26-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "Wonderful Plot and Story"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    yes. but not the best quality.


    Did Michael Prichard do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Seemed he may have been under the weather during this one.


    Any additional comments?

    There is a Technical quality problem with the Gain and other board things.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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