Iconic sleuth Nero Wolfe returns to track down the murderer of a New York Symphony Orchestra conductor in this Nero Award–winning mystery.
Ever since disgraced associate Orrie Cather’s suicide, armchair detective Nero Wolfe has relished retirement in his Manhattan brownstone on West Thirty-Fifth Street. Two years after Cather’s death, only a visit from Maria Radovich—and the urging of Wolfe’s prize assistant, Archie Goodwin—could draw the eccentric and reclusive genius back into business. Maria’s uncle, New York Symphony Orchestra conductor Milan Stevens, formerly known as Milos Stefanovic, spent his youth alongside Wolfe as a fellow freedom fighter in the mountains of Montenegro. And now that the maestro has been receiving death threats, Wolfe can’t turn his back on the compatriot who once saved his life.
Though her uncle has dismissed the menacing letters, Maria fears they’re more than the work of a harmless crank. But before Wolfe can attack the case, Stevens is murdered. The accused is the orchestra’s lead violinist, whose intimate relationship with Maria hit more than a few sour notes in her uncle’s professional circle. But Wolfe knows that when it comes to murder, nothing is so simple—especially when there are so many suspects, from newspaper critics and ex-lovers to an assortment of shady musicians.
Now, in this award-winning novel that carries on the great tradition of Rex Stout, the irascible and immovable Nero Wolfe is back in the game, listening for clues and ready to go to war to find a killer.
Murder in E Minor is the 48th book in the Nero Wolfe Mysteries, but you may enjoy reading the series in any order.
Devotees of the late Rex Stout's bestsellers will be pleasantly surprised by Goldsborough's first story about Nero Wolfe. Related by the elephantine genius's faithful assistant Archie Goodwin, this mystery starts when Maria Radovich asks him to intercede for her with Wolfe. She's worried over threats against her great-uncle Milan Stevens, controversial new director of the New York Symphony. Since Stevens, ne Mikos Stefanovic, had saved the detective's life years earlier in Montenegro, Wolfe agrees to take the case. Before he can act, however, someone stabs the musician fatally in his apartment. The police arrest Jerry Milner, a violinist with the orchestra and Maria's fiance, but Wolfe demolishes the evidence against him. While his boss remains sedentary, Archie obeys orders to go looking for information about other suspects: the victims's sponsor who regrets his choice of director; musicians whom the maestro had publicly insulted; the glamorous society woman who had been his frequent companion. As always, Wolfe solves the puzzle without moving from the famous brownstone on 37th St.