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Publisher's Summary

Her uncle was healthy, but in order to get wealthy did she plot his demise? Is there evil in the heir?

Frances Celane has good reason to pout. Thanks to a provision in her late father's will administered by her uncle, she's caught in the middle of a family feud between matrimony and money. If she chooses marriage, she loses a million. But beautiful young Frances has a strong will of her own that she's not afraid to use. One way or another, she means to hear wedding bells and cash registers making beautiful music together. Her first move: hire Perry Mason to orchestrate things.

Unfortunately, stubbornness runs in Frances Celane's family, as Mason discovers when he confronts her Uncle Edward Norton. After Perry's powers of persuasion fail to penetrate his hard head, someone decides the only way of cashing in is by bashing in the uncooperative uncle's skull. But when the blood spills, so do the secrets. Then it's Mason's turn to brood, as he tries to figure out if a girl as pretty as his client could have a hand in something so ugly....

©1933 Erle Stanley Gardner. Renewed 1961 by Erle Stanley Gardner (P)2016 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

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What listeners say about The Case of the Sulky Girl

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Love Perry Mason

What a great mystery and court room drama. I will buy them all.

Perry is harder than in the television show. A true man’s man.

1 person found this helpful

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Another classic hard boiled mystery

If you enjoy Phillip Marlowe, Mike Hammer, Mike Shane, and the other hard boiled detectives you will enjoy the Perry Mason series of mysteries. This is not the Perry Mason you may know from the television series. This Perry Mason is s tough, no hold bared, lawyer/detective. Think Phillip Marlow or Mike Hammer with a law degree and you got the idea.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Plenty of plot twists

There are a lot of interesting characters but it is the lawyer Perry Mason that makes the story special. His energy makes me want to just keep reading and reading. This story is an Erle Stanley Gardner classic.

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it didn't finish strong

This is the 2nd book in the Mason series and I am enjoying them. I cut them some slack, due to the era they were written (super mysoginistic), but the narrator's female voices are grating and borderline insulting as a woman. This book ended weakly though. I didn't feel he tied the accomplices together satisfactorily.

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Perry Mason is the best

keeps one guessing till the end. love to follow him through the logic to conclusion

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Excellent narration of a classic!

Well worth a listen. Interesting, fast-paced, and faithful to the tone of the novel. Thanks!

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GREAT listen

not a disappointment. listened to 2/3 of the book before I figured it out..
great listen...really love Audible

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Long time ESG fan

If you could sum up The Case of the Sulky Girl in three words, what would they be?

Interesting plot

What did you like best about this story?

The interaction between Perry and Della

Any additional comments?

I have read all the Perry Mason books several times and now that my eyesight is failing, I can listen to them on Audible. Thanks!

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A fantastic Perry Mason mystery!

Secretary Della Street informs her boss, Perry Mason, that a young woman looking either scared or sulky is waiting to consult him in Erle Stanley Gardner's second Perry Mason book The Case of the Sulky Girl. Frances Celane has been living under a trust controlled by her uncle for the last two years that gives him extreme discretion with her vast fortune. One detail is that if she marries before the age of 25, her uncle can choose to give her only $5,000 and donate the rest to charities. But the 23-year-old Fran wants to marry now. She arranges a meeting for Mason with her uncle that shows Perry how unreasonable the man is, leaving the lawyer determined to best the man.

Then that night, as Perry is pouring over his law references to try to find a way to best the other man, he gets a call from Fran that her uncle, Edward Norton, has been murdered. Perry needs to come to the home she has shared with her uncle. The police have arrested the chauffeur, but Perry thinks this is a set-up. Despite the fact that he represents Frances Celane and not the chauffeur, Perry is determined to get to the truth of the matter, even though it may lead to the arrest of Frances. This leads Perry down a road of lies, blackmail, and corruption.

The second half of The Case of the Sulky Girl is taken up with a trial during which Perry seems to be letting the prosecution get away with anything. It is clear that Gardner did his research into legal terms and procedures. And it is just while Perry seems ready to lose that he pulls off a miracle, as usual.

This book does a fantastic job of making us fall for an illusion set up in the right hand while the trick is pulled off in the left. The solution is not completely hidden from us throughout the book, though it came as a big surprise to me at the conclusion.

Only the most significant characters in this book have much development of their personae. Perry comes across as round and complete, wily and clever. We don't get to know as well his secretary Della Street and detective Paul Drake, whom we met in the first book, The Case of the Velvet Claws. Frances does get built up, as we see her fiery temper and means of trying to manipulate the situation on her own.

The audio edition of this book is narrated by Alexander Cendese. He does a great job of performing this book, with his deep voice well suited to the character of Perry. He adds a lot to the experience of listening to this book.

I really enjoyed The Case of the Sulky Girl. I especially enjoyed getting to see Perry work in the courtroom, a setting we didn't see in the previous book. The mystery was well- crafted and clever. I give the book five stars.

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Another mystery solved

Excellent story with a great plot and characters. The voice for women is quite distinguish in a strange way. The plot followed well; definitely will continue to listen to the series