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The Rubber Band (Nero Wolfe) Paperback – April 1, 1995


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The Rubber Band (Nero Wolfe) + The League of Frightened Men (Nero Wolfe) + Fer-de-Lance (Nero Wolfe)
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Product Details

  • Series: Nero Wolfe
  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam (April 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553763091
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553763096
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #269,597 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"The Rubber Band by Rex Stout is a complete and unabridged mystery starring Nero Wolfe and his faithful sidekick, Archie Goodwin. Wolfe, who died in 1975 at age 89, wrote stories that hold up remarkably well. In this, which involves the American West and the British nobility, we have Wolfe's tongue-in-cheek exercise program developed to comply with his physician's edict that he must lose weight: dart throwing. Michael Prichard, who has pretty much become the voice of Archie Goodwin, reads. Recently, he was named by Smart Money magazine as one of audio's "Top 10 Golden Voices." -- The Arizona Daily Star

"It is always a treat to [hear] a Nero Wolfe mystery. The man has entered our folklore." -- The New York Times Book Review

"Nero Wolfe, the fat detective of Rex Stout's novels, towers over his rivals...he is an exceptional character creation." -- The New Yorker

"Rex Stout...raised detective fiction to the level of art. He gave us genius of at least two kinds, and a strong realist voice that was shot through with hope." -- Walter Mosley --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Publisher

6 1.5-hour cassettes --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

His books are very funny and the plots entertaining.
darci lane
This is probably my third read in about fifteen years (and the first time I have read the electronic version) and I still enjoy it every time.
Amazon Customer
Yeah, I really enjoyed this book, and can't wait to read my second Nero Wolfe novel!
Kurt A. Johnson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 23, 1998
Format: Hardcover
An early Wolfe, very strong plot and fun read. If not quite up to the next 10 or so efforts it is smoother than Fer-de-Lance and Stout begins to humanize Wolfe's character. I think Inspector Cramer makes his first appearance,too.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By darci lane on September 9, 2004
Format: Paperback
This is one of his first. I've read them all, several times each. Even tho this is not his best, Rex Stout still writes far better than most writers today. His books are very funny and the plots entertaining. Closest I've come to finding his successor is Deadly Diamonds, by Pamela Troutman.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Sarah Rogers on April 10, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Clara Fox is at the center of two mysteries: 1) one of her employers accuses her of stealing $30,000 of company monies and 2) she asks Wolfe to help find an associate of her deceased father and recover monies promised when he was a member of the Rubber Band.

The Rubber Band was a group of 6 men who, 40 years previously, helped an Englishman escape the law in Silver City, NV in return for possible rewards if he inherited a part of his family's wealth in the future. Time has passed. Clara has found two survivors of the band and the daughter of another. Together, the four have located the Englishman who is now a peer and extremely wealthy. They ask Wolfe to help them prevail upon the Englishman to fulfill his promise.

Before long, two men are murdered and the lives of two women, including Clara, are threatened. The two cases appear related and people are not what they seem.

This is an early Nero Wolfe, but it has all the classic ingredients. Wolfe stays in his office/home and directs Archie, his assistant, and a group of hourly wage PI's. He never misses a meal or his two daily sessions with his prize-winning orchids in the greenhouse on the roof. The police and district attorney come to his office to threaten and cajole. But Wolfe sits and thinks and solves the cases.

This is a great mystery (as are all Nero Wolfe mysteries). It is well constructed--events are carefully interwoven and characters are unique. It relies on interrogation, deduction, and intellectual prowess not DNA, forensic evidence and violence. You can follow along and see if you can find the killer.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Judith Paley VINE VOICE on September 26, 2009
Format: Audio Cassette Verified Purchase
The older the better on these Rex Stout mysteries, and the elegant turn of phrase just can't be beat. Nero Wolfe apologizing to a lady caller tells her that it's "bulk not boorishness" that keeps him seated as she enters the room. His assistant Archie directs a visitor to a place where he can park "the back of his lap," a concept that stops the gentleman dead in his tracks.

The narrator is great, the plot engaging, and, as opposed to his later more convoluted stories, there's just enough information to make your own stab at solving the case. A great yarn!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Ohioan on October 25, 2011
Format: Paperback
In this, the third book in the Nero Wolfe series, we are introduced to Clara Fox, who is hiding from the police, and we get to see the Wolfe household through a woman's eyes. She loves the food, the cleanliness, the routine, and declares that she will marry Nero and find a woman for Archie, too. We are also introduced to Lieutenant Rowcliff of the NYPD. By this time, the characters are developed into who they will be throughout the series. Wolfe throws darts for "exercise." Archie looks in on Wolfe and finds the fat man's lips moving silently -- a sure sign that Wolfe is thinking hard, so Archie doesn't disturb him. Full of wit, humanity, and intelligence.
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9 of 13 people found the following review helpful By John P Bernat on October 7, 2004
Format: Paperback
Rubber Coleman got his nickname by always seeming to bounce back after being knocked down in a fight. [Why did this remind me of Bill Clinton??]

Rex Stout bounced back from The League of Frightened Gentlemen with this one - the first of a few of his which jumped off Manhattan Island and recounted a tall tale of the old West. The League scared some of his early readers, I think: it was too ethereal and high-concept.

The Rubber Band shoots from the hip, by sharp contrast. Since Rex had traveled the whole United States by this time, and had spent considerable time in the West, his background should at least lend credence to the accuracy of this story.

However, like some of the reviews below assert, its actual credibility is really thin. I won't say more, since the book is enjoyable despite its flaws, but don't expect Fer de Lance, and...

...you won't be disappointed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Cynthia Nill on August 9, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I love the Rex Stout, Nero Wolfe mysteries. Michael Prichard, the reader of the Wolfe mysteries on tape (cd) does a great job bringing the books to life. I love listening to these when I am in the kitchen cooking the evening meal. The Rubber Band proved to be a great kitchen companion. If you like mysteries and have never read or listened to a Nero Wolfe mystery, you are missing a great treat.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kurt A. Johnson TOP 1000 REVIEWER on November 29, 2012
Format: Paperback
When an old client makes an emergency call on Nero Wolfe's office, just before a scheduled appointment, Wolfe and Archie Goodwin have little reason to believe that it's a complicated matter at all. But, when it turns out that the two matters are inextricably linked, Mr. Wolfe turns all his considerable talent on discovering the truth of the matter. But, his new client is a very desirable woman - the police want her, her old employer wants her, an English lord wants her, and a murderer really wants her! Now it is up to Nero Wolfe to save the day...and he is definitely up to the job!

I must say that this is my very first Nero Wolfe novel, and I am very pleased! Mr. Stout's detective is fascinatingly eccentric (as are all the great detectives), his sidekick's (Archie's) banter is very funny, and the mystery itself is quite interesting. Yeah, I really enjoyed this book, and can't wait to read my second Nero Wolfe novel!
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