The Case of the 16 Beans

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Published: 1944
Language: English
Wordcount: 63,048 / 186 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 77.2
LoC Category: PN
Downloads: 4,155
Added to site: 2008.10.11 22327

Why did old Balhatchet Barkstone, on dying, leave his nephew 16 beans?
Why did Boyce Barkstone, the heir, hold on to the beans?
Why did Hu Fong, a Chinese detective, come to the conclusion that a poverty-stricken hermit was murdered for an article of great value, and what might that article be?
Why did Hutchcock McDolphus, dealer in hides, refuse to accept any price whatsoever for a simple book costing $3.50?
These are only a few of the seemingly insoluble riddles which Keeler answers, in his own inimitable manner, in his latest mystery-adventure.

Show Excerpt

him, with a sniff, 'W'y you don' leab all dem young gals alone?' The old sport had come back at Josiah so quick it had taken Josiah's breath away; for the ancient rouéroue' had said, as near as I can figure it out: 'Go blow yo' tin trumpet elsewhah, yo' moronic quatah-wit'--to which, Josiah, being, as you probably know, an old-fashioned Negro, and very slow-witted, couldn't think of a single comeback. And every time, after that, that the sporty old Negro met Josiah, he handed Josiah some kind of a hot-shot. So Josiah wanted me to give him--Josiah--some sort of an all-round comeback to hand this old smart-aleck next time--and every time--the latter dished out a crack. Well, I figured I knew just the proper comeback to 'most any sort of crack, and I had just finished saying, to Josiah, in the parlor there, 'All right. You say to him, next time he hands you any kind of a hot-shot, this:--' when the phone rang. 'Hold ever'thing, Josiah,' I said, 'till I answer that call, and I'll be right back in


Average Rating of 4 from 2 reviews: ****
Leah A. Zeldes

In which a rare book of Chinese wisdom bizarrely determines the fates of a disinherited heir and a millionaire impresario, as told in Keeler's inimitable fashion.


Entertaining read, and one I\'d recommend.

The story hinges on the interactions between the characters and a book of Chinese wisdom. There are two plots (not really correct to call the second a sub-plot, even though it\'s the other that involves the beans of the book\'s title) - one about a strange inheritance, and the other a crime - and both involve the Chinese book.

It\'s a good old-fashioned thriller, involving characters with very colourful names (although perhaps in these days of celebrities dumping their kids with bizarre names, not so strange as they might once have been!).

One thing that does let it down is the poor proofreading, but hopefully the site will sort that out in the future.

(Promote your book here)

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