Not Quite Dead Enough

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Not Quite Dead Enough
Author Rex Stout
Cover artist Max Glick
Country United States
Language English
Series Nero Wolfe
Genre Detective novel
Publisher Farrar & Rinehart
Publication date
September 7, 1944
Media type Print (Hardcover)
Pages 220 pp. (first edition)
OCLC 734079995
Preceded by Black Orchids
Followed by The Silent Speaker

Not Quite Dead Enough is a Nero Wolfe double mystery by Rex Stout published in 1944 by Farrar & Rinehart, Inc. The volume contains two novellas that first appeared in The American Magazine:

In these two stories Archie Goodwin, Wolfe's live-in employee in all the other Nero Wolfe stories, wears the uniform of the United States Army.

Reviews and commentary[edit]

  • Jacques Barzun and Wendell Hertig Taylor, A Catalogue of Crime — Neither is to be missed by anyone with an interest in the Wolfe-Goodwin saga. In this one Archie has to incriminate himself to get Wolfe to abandon physical training and get back to ratiocination and both help win the war. Full of amusing characters and with more action and fewer words than is sometimes true of the longer tales. ... Nero Wolfe does a neat job of selecting the culprit by arranging a booby trap of his own. The final scene, in which Wolfe plays God, is unique: no beer, no audience except Archie (a major of three weeks' standing), and the murderer in a car in Van Cortlandt Park.[1]

Publication history[edit]

In his limited-edition pamphlet, Collecting Mystery Fiction #9, Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe Part I, Otto Penzler describes the first edition of Not Quite Dead Enough: "Red cloth, front cover and spine printed with black; rear cover blank. Issued in a mainly black, red and blue pictorial dust wrapper. … The first edition has the publisher's monogram logo on the copyright page. the second printing, in the same year, is identical to the first except that the logo was dropped."[3]
In April 2006, Firsts: The Book Collector's Magazine estimated that the first edition of Not Quite Dead Enough had a value of between $1,000 and $2,000.[4]
Armed Services Edition P-6 was published by the Council on Books in Wartime and made available to the Armed Forces of the United States in February 1945
  • 1944, Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1944, hardcover
  • 1944, New York: Detective Book Club #33, December 1944, hardcover
  • 1944, New York: Detective Book Club, 1944, hardcover
  • 1945, New York: Armed Services Edition #P-6, February 1945, paperback
  • 1946, New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1946, hardcover
  • New York: Lawrence E. Spivak, Jonathan Press #J27, not dated, paperback
  • 1949, New York: Dell mapback #267, 1949, paperback
  • 1963, New York: Pyramid (Green Door) #R-822, February 1963, paperback
  • 1992, New York: Bantam Crimeline ISBN 0-553-26109-6 October 1992, paperback, Rex Stout Library edition with introduction by John Lutz
  • 1995, Burlington, Ontario: Durkin Hayes Publishing, DH Audio ISBN 0-88646-727-6 July 1994, audio cassette (unabridged, read by Saul Rubinek)
  • 2004, Auburn, California: The Audio Partners Publishing Corp., Mystery Masters ISBN 1-57270-362-8 February 2004, audio CD (unabridged, read by Michael Prichard)
  • 2010, New York: Bantam Crimeline ISBN 978-0-307-75607-7 May 26, 2010, e-book


  1. ^ Barzun, Jacques and Taylor, Wendell Hertig. A Catalogue of Crime. New York: Harper & Row. 1971, revised and enlarged edition 1989. ISBN 0-06-015796-8
  2. ^ Townsend, Guy M., Rex Stout: An Annotated Primary and Secondary Bibliography (1980, New York: Garland Publishing; ISBN 0-8240-9479-4), p. 80
  3. ^ Penzler, Otto, Collecting Mystery Fiction #9, Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe Part I (2001, New York: The Mysterious Bookshop, limited edition of 250 copies), pp. 18–19
  4. ^ Smiley, Robin H., "Rex Stout: A Checklist of Primary First Editions." Firsts: The Book Collector's Magazine (Volume 16, Number 4), April 2006, p. 33

External links[edit]