Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe books are all great fun, full of wonderful food and the arcane details of hobbies as diverse as orchid growing and Balkan history. But in this outing, things suddenly become much more serious when Wolfe and his sidekick Archie Goodwin face the malevolent forces of J. Edgar Hoover and his FBI minions. Luckily, Stout's heart and his writing style are more than equal to the challenge
Nero Wolfe is still the most pompous ass since Poirot. Archie Goodwin, as picturesque and lovable as ever, throws his wit and muscle around: he's not quite Philip Marlowe but entertaining enough. The police are never quite up to the task, so nothing's new in detective fiction. At least no one breaks down on the witness stand and confesses to the crime. And, the plot it is somewhat plausible. This is an easy read for an afternoon, or evening.