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by Rex Stout

The scent of murder is in the air at the great Pour Amour perfume contest, and the incomparable Nero Wolfe is intent on sniffing out the killer. The foul deed is committed during the contest’s final round. Only five riddles separate the contestants from the million-dollar cash prize when someone finds the sweet smell of success too intoxicating to leave to chance. Now the contest creator is dead and the answers stolen from his wallet, and it’s up to Wolfe to follow the trail of clues to a source disturbingly close to home. Introduction by Robert Crais   “It is always a treat to read a Nero Wolfe mystery. The man has entered our folklore.”—The New York Times Book Review   A grand master of the form, Rex Stout is one of America’s greatest mystery writers, and his literary creation Nero Wolfe is one of the greatest fictional detectives of all time. Together, Stout and Wolfe have entertained—and puzzled—millions of mystery fans around the world. Now, with his perambulatory man-about-town, Archie Goodwin, the arrogant, gourmandizing, sedentary sleuth is back in the original seventy-three cases of crime and detection written by the inimitable master himself, Rex Stout.
Download Before Midnight (Nero Wolfe) epub
ISBN: 0553763040
ISBN13: 978-0553763041
Category: Mystery
Subcategory: Mystery
Author: Rex Stout
Language: English
Publisher: Bantam (November 1, 1995)
Pages: 228 pages
ePUB size: 1694 kb
FB2 size: 1886 kb
Rating: 4.5
Votes: 278
Other Formats: docx txt mbr rtf

Generally I am always entertained by Rex Stout's stories. However, while the challenge was to stay attentive to various clues, there were too many distractions for me in this read. It didn't help that there was hardly a likeable character in the cast--except for Archie Goodwin and Fritz, of course. But, the construct of Wolfe's commission seemed an implausible scenario for him to agree to, and so made the entire story difficult to attach to, or enjoy. I have read many of Nero Wolfe mysteries, and they are enjoyable excursions. I have given this 4 stars since even this story holds interest and a different perspective on what drives people to crime.
I’ve read nearly all the Nero Wolfe mysteries over the years, it somehow missed this one. It has some of the panache of Rex Stout’s other books but seemed to me to be rather blah.

Archie Goodwin was pretty tame, and Saul Panzer made the briefest of appearances. Ditto Lon Cohen. These two minor characters are often the source of much amusement and color in the Wolfe canon.

There was little in the way of contemporary NYC portrayed in this book. Many times in older books Stout describes people, places, and the local scene, it little of that came through here.
As usual, I can always depend on his books, novels mysteries, detective or what have ever you, to be just perfect. I'll read until I either go to sleep, or have something(s) to do. I may return, and definitely will, to find them just as fresh, the details still easily recalled, I can easily slip back into his story. So far, I have only read about seven, I don't find any repeats of plots, just the same esteemable characters. He has about a hundred of these Nero Wolfe books! Will I get tired of them? No. By the time if ever I do get to as many as I can afford, they may run as high as fifty-bucks an e-book!
This was as good as any of the previous Nero Wolf books I have enjoyed. It is always a pleasure to crack open one of these books.
I'm a little out of step with the other reviewers in that I don't think this is one of Stout's better Nero Wolfe mysteries. It was written in 1955, well after his prime period. For me, Wolfe belongs in the New York of the 1930s and 1940s. There are some good points: Archie Goodwin's narration is well done and he gets off enough good lines that you will have a few chuckles. My main problem is that the mystery and the characters just aren't very interesting. There are nine suspects, most of whom are rather bland. Because there are so many of them, there isn't space for any of them to appear for more than a brief period. Although one of the women suspects is described as being attractive, Stout passes on his frequent gambit of having Archie take a romantic interest in her. The resolution of the mystery is also unsatisfying as it turns out that X had a grudge against Y that would have been difficult for the reader to figure out. In other words, I don't think Stout really plays fair with the reader on this one.

This edition contains a brief introduction by Robert Crais that spells out nicely what I guess we all knew: Archie, not Wolfe, is the key to the success of these books. So, if you are Wolfe fan and haven't yet read this one, it's worth picking up. If you are new to Wolfe, go back and get one of the earlier books from the 1930s or 1940s. Bantam has recently begun to reissue those in a new format that combines two books in one volume. They are definitely more of a bargain than these somewhat pricey "Rex Stout Library" editions.
Nero Wolfe and Archie are in good form in this installment. The plot is a fun one set around a perfume company contest. A cast of quirky characters give Archie plenty of opportunity for humorous cracks and asides. Always a pleasure to step into the brownstone and settle back for a great read.
Pretty good Wolfe, great New York atmosphere, some interesting characters. The plot concerns a contest sponsored by an ad agency in support of a perfume called Pour Amour. Unfortunately all the ad agency guys are pretty loathesome, and choice of the victim and perpetrator seems arbitrary.
Unlike most Rex Stout books, at the end of this one you and Archie are left with questions. It was a page turner with Archie at his best.

Spoiler alert: They have a roadster which Archie and Saul drive. There is also a sedan in the garage? What is going on?

The fasion statements are extrodinary in this one. Descriptions are better than ever.

The introduction by Robert Crais was both clarifying and challenging. I actually checked other mysteries to check his viewpoint.

Great read.