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The Rubber Band (1936)

by Rex Stout

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Nero Wolfe (3)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
8132427,015 (3.84)72
"Nero Wolfe towers over his rivals. . . . He is an exceptional character creation."--New Yorker What do a Wild West lynching and a respected English nobleman have in common? On the surface, absolutely nothing. But when a young woman hires his services, it becomes Nero Wolfe's job to look deeper and find the connection. A forty-year-old pact, a five-thousand-mile search, and a million-dollar murder are all linked to an international scandal that could rebound on the great detective and his partner, Archie, with fatal abruptness. "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.… (more)
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» See also 72 mentions

English (24)  Italian (1)  All languages (25)
Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
Rex Stout combined the hard-boiled detective of Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler with the intellectual master-detective of the Sherlock Holmes stories and came up with a most winning formula for his long series of Nero Wolfe books. While Wolfe cogitates without leaving his home, his legman Archie Goodwin handles the tough guy stuff, as well as the narration. The Wolfe books are extraordinarily entertaining, and THE RUBBER BAND is one of the best. It deals with the collection of a debt owed a disparate group of people from many years before and the murders that arise when that debt isn't paid. Stout so perfectly combines the elements most loved about the Holmes and the hard-boiled dick stories, and he creates such a richly familiar environment, that the scores of novels he wrote never grow boring or common. And his plotting is so intricate that one wonders how he was able to achieve such intricacy over and over again. But he does, and just about every Wolfe book is a wealth of entertainment. ( )
  jumblejim | Aug 26, 2023 |
Very enjoyable mystery with the bonus of Wolfe getting his exercise by playing darts! ( )
  leslie.98 | Jun 27, 2023 |
This kindle edition has a gazillion typos. ( )
  Castinet | Dec 11, 2022 |
Private detective Nero Wolfe takes on two seemingly unrelated cases linked by a beautiful young woman. If Wolfe manages to absolve her of charges of theft, she may end up being charged with murder. Between Wolfe’s brains and his assistant Archie’s leg work, the reader can be sure that the pair will solve both puzzles.

Archie Goodwin’s first-person narration is the key to this series’s enduring appeal. Archie’s sarcastic wit softens the edges of Wolfe’s irritating personality. He’s often irritated by Wolfe’s eccentricities, but his irritation is tempered by respect and even affection for his boss. Readers see Wolfe through Archie’s eyes, and that makes all the difference. ( )
  cbl_tn | Aug 1, 2022 |
The third book in Stout's series of Nero Wolfe mysteries sees Wolfe mixed up in a strange case involving Wild West tale from 40 years prior (circa 1896) and a present-day English lord and diplomat.

This was never one of my favorites; I don't think the series really hits its stride until Book 5, Too Many Cooks. Because of that, I haven't re-read it nearly as often as later books, so I was surprised to find that it was better than I remembered. The tall tale of a poker-game shootout, an wild escape just ahead of a hanging, and a promise to share half of any eventual wealth in exchange for a fast horse is pretty out there, but as always Wolfe and Archie are put to the task.

The culprit seemed to be pretty obvious to me, but then again I've read it before so maybe my subconscious remembered more than I thought. The main recommendation for reading this one is to get to the better stories later on. ( )
  rosalita | Jul 23, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Rex Stoutprimary authorall editionscalculated
Kalvas, ReijoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Prichard, MichaelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
I threw down the magazine section of the Sunday Times and yawned.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Original title: The Rubber Band; reissued as To Kill Again
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
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Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

"Nero Wolfe towers over his rivals. . . . He is an exceptional character creation."--New Yorker What do a Wild West lynching and a respected English nobleman have in common? On the surface, absolutely nothing. But when a young woman hires his services, it becomes Nero Wolfe's job to look deeper and find the connection. A forty-year-old pact, a five-thousand-mile search, and a million-dollar murder are all linked to an international scandal that could rebound on the great detective and his partner, Archie, with fatal abruptness. "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.

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