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The Case of the Backward Mule

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Genre Mystery and thrillers

Selection Terry Clane

Year 2021

Volume book: Full version

Erle Stanley Gardner turns to a hair-raising tale about the hero of “Murder Up My Sleeve” — quiet, amazingly perceptive Terry Clane, who bids fair to rank with those other two favorites, Perry Mason and Doug Selby...

Terry Clane, just back from China where he has been working on a secret government mission, runs into murder when he walks down the gangway at San Francisco. Whisked straight from the dock to police headquarters, Terry puts to good use all the powers of intense concentration he has learned in the Orient in order to beat the lie detector with its uncanny mind-reading. 

Terry quickly senses that despite his absence the police think he knows too much about the escape of a man convicted of murder. The fugitive has disappeared and Cynthia Renton, original, impetuous painter who was once Terry’s fiancée, has disappear too. Was Cynthia implicated in the escape? Where would she hide a fugitive from justice?

Terry’s mind flew to Sou Ha, the sparkling vivacious daughter of his wisest Chinese friend, in her hidden, luxurious home in San Francisco’s Chinatown. How far would Sou Ha’s loyalty to Terry take her?

Sight of the old Chinese figure of Chow Kok Koh, riding backward on his white mule, sent the lie detector needles shooting up. Terry had given that figure to Cynthia. What was it doing now, stained with blood, a clue in a brutal murder?

A plot that never lets down from beginning to end, human and fascinating characters, a Story told with authentic punch, all prove that the maestro has done it again. From the appointment in the lonely warehouse to the explosive climax, it’s top mystery fare.

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