C.W. Grafton’s The Rat Began to Gnaw the Rope

Posted on Updated on

As Maureen Corrigan recently said in The Washington Post, Poisoned Pen Press and the Library of Congress have partnered to reprint underappreciated American mysteries in a series called Library of Congress Crime Classics. One of the earliest ones is written by Sue Grafton’s father, C.W. Grafton. His book, The Rat Began to Gnaw the Rope, is available through the Web Store. https://bit.ly/3h70p0z

You can find Corrigan’s review here. https://wapo.st/2XC3rSw

Here’s the summary of The Rat Began to Gnaw the Rope.

s this lawyer digging his way to the truth, or digging his own grave?

Short, chubby, and awkward with members of the opposite sex, Gil Henry is the youngest partner in a small law firm, not a hard-boiled sleuth. So when an attractive young woman named Ruth McClure walks into his office and asks him to investigate the value of the stock she inherited from her father, he thinks nothing of it—until someone makes an attempt on his life.

Soon Gil is inadvertently embroiled in scandal, subterfuge, and murder. He’s beaten, shot, and stabbed, as his colleagues and enemies try to stop him from seeing the case through to the end. Surrounded by adversaries, he teams up with Ruth and her secretive brother to find answers to the questions someone desperately wants to keep him from asking.

In this portrait of America on the eve of America’s entry into World War II, C.W. Grafton—himself a lawyer and the father of prolific mystery writer Sue Grafton—pens an award-winning mystery that combines humor and the hard-boiled style and will keep readers guessing until its thrilling conclusion.