Monday, December 25, 2006

"As Dark as Christmas Gets" by Lawrence Block

Available in Enough Rope by Lawrence Block, William Morrow, 2002.

On Christmas Day, New York PIs Chip Harrison and Leo Haig are hired by the owner of a mystery bookshop on West 56th Street to find an unfinished Cornell Woolrich manuscript missing from the owner's personal collection since a party the night before. Nero Wolfe fanatic Haig has Harrison bring seven suspects to the shop, and he proceeds to interview them as a group.

Longtime mystery fans will recognize the shop owner as Otto Penzler. In the voices of his characters, Block pokes fun at Penzler, himself (Block completed Woolrich's Into the Night), and literary pretense in general.

1 comment:

Graham said...

I remember this story well - it was hysterical! My favorite is the bookstore owner's shocked indignation when Haig said something like, "A copy will do just fine."