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The Case of the Lame Canary (Perry Mason #11)

3.75  ·  Rating Details  ·  383 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
When a murdered man is found in the home of shady insurance adjustor Walter Prescott, a simple divorce case turns into a courtroom puzzler, as Perry Mason follows the clues to catch a killer. Reissue.
Mass Market Paperback, 256 pages
Published May 12th 1984 by Fawcett (first published 1937)
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(showing 1-30 of 657)
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James Thane
In this outing, Perry gets suckered into taking a divorce case when a young woman shows up in his office carrying a cage with a lame canary in it. Under normal circumstances of course , Perry would never touch something as boring as a routine divorce suit and the woman insists that the lame canary is incidental to the whole business and that she just happened to have it along with her. But Perry is so damned curious about the injured bird that he takes the woman's case against his better judgmen ...more
Rob Smith
Nov 19, 2014 Rob Smith rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2014
What stands out as the best parts of 'The Case of the Lame Canary is the interaction between the Perry Mason, Della Street and Paul Drake characters. Gardcner is at the top of his writing skills with consistency and character development.

This is also true of the rest of the cast of this novel. Distinct characters developed throughout the book. This all helps wading through a very convoluted and overly concocted story by Gardner.

This book revels Gardeners ability to write great characterized an
May 20, 2011 Jz rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, own
Best Perry Mason I've read to date. Way better than the formulaic stuff from which they made the tv series. Twists I certainly didn't see coming, and a little romance at the end. A few loose ends, little character development, but a great plot. Read it.
Dec 24, 2014 Freya rated it liked it
Shelves: ebooks
The case starts out interesting but got quite complicated as it progressed. The finish was really twisted and made sense only after the explanation was provided.
Oct 15, 2013 Elderberrywine rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
The plot was decent enough, because really Gardner can't do a bad one, but the big news was in the character development area.

Mason proposes to Della, you guys!!!! And she, being her bad girl self, asks if he expects her to be the good wifie and stay home, to which he replies, "Well, duh."

And she immediately comes back with "Nope, not happening then, because I'm having a hella more fun the way it is." Whereupon the pair of them leave for a cruise around the world. Whether two cabins or one is c
Dec 16, 2015 Bob rated it really liked it
I've been reading Gardner's Perry Mason books off and on for decades. Many years ago, I was an intense fan of the series, and read them all at least once. Now, after a lot of water over the dam, I'm looking at them again.

Those who are used to really fine mystery writers (in the literary sense) may find Gardner's writing style off-putting. It can be stiff and mechanical. Nonetheless, I still love the general setting: the characters of Perry, Della, Paul, Lt. Tragg, and Hamilton Berger. That, and
May 21, 2013 Virginia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Se lo robé a mi hermana y no he podido parar de leerlo!! Otro crimen de Perry Mason volverá a mis manos seguro...
Raja Subramanian
Erle Stanley Gardner has not written really bad books. This is one is good, but falls way short of what he does normally. That Perry Mason gets interested in a case on account of a Lame Canary appears, well, lame and forced. The plot is quite OK and the story races at a neat pace.

Towards the end, while on a cruise, Perry Mason "proposes" to Della Street and she thinks that life is great the way it is, with her being the Secretary! In this book, there are no great courtroom battles. There are onl
Mar 15, 2014 Ed rated it really liked it
Shelves: legal, mystery
#11 in the Perry Mason series. This 1937 entry is a quite enjoyable entry in the 82 book series.

Perry Mason is visited by Rita Swain concerning the marital problem her sister is having. Sister Rosalind (or look alike Rita) is visited by ex-boyfriend Jimmy and then husband Walter's body is discovered. Tracking the timeline of the suspects and tracing possible witnesses and what they saw form the basis of one of the best Perry Mason puzzlers.
Apr 15, 2014 DavidO rated it liked it
This one starts interesting, with a woman showing up at Mason's office carrying a canary. The end felt too convoluted.

Notable parts of this book: Della tries to force Mason to go on a cruise vacation with her. Near the end, Mason asks something unexpected of her, and she gives an answer that is even more unexpected.
Mar 31, 2014 Maheswaran rated it liked it
Interesting plot.
Very abrupt ending with twisted logic as expected of any of these kind of books.

Kept me interested till the end. Didn't want to put down.
As always perfect companion for the wait for the four hour delayed train.

Somewhere between 3 and 4. But not worth the four. So settling for a three.
Nov 27, 2015 Kevin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like how the Perry Mason character is evolving. Not as gruff as in the earlier books and his demeanor is much more professional. The plots, however, are becoming more complicated and involve more characters. I'm going to have to start taking notes.
Ramgopal Sripada
Sep 15, 2015 Ramgopal Sripada rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When the book started, I've no clue how it ends and why a criminal lawyer is consulted. As the pages moved... case got interesting. The courtroom conversations were at their best. A pretty decent ending.
Aug 10, 2015 Richard rated it liked it
Complex, talky, with maybe too many surprises, but enjoyable enough for me because, though it was written 22 years before the TV premiere of "Perry Mason, I couldn't help but hear the voices of Raymond Burr and company.
May 09, 2014 Kevin rated it it was ok
This is the first Perry Mason mystery where I really lost interest in the mystery because it became so convoluted that the ENTIRE second-to-last chapter is Perry explaining who killed who and why and where and... Unlike most of Gardner's mysteries, the cast of suspects/clients are not very well-drawn. They don't engage us and so we don't care if they're guilty/innocent/being set up.The only interesting aspect of this book is that Perry proposes to Della Street and that the case must be solved in ...more
Mazeli Dee
Oct 20, 2015 Mazeli Dee rated it it was amazing
So Perry Mason did propose to Della! Huh!
Anh Phung
Good ebook
Doug Dams
Oct 13, 2011 Doug Dams rated it liked it
A Perry Mason story usually centers around a legal matter, a murder, or an unusual circumstance. This story, it is an unusual circumstance. A woman wants help with her sister's domestic troubles. Perry is about to decline the job until he notices the woman's canary is lame. This leads him into a fraudulant car accident, and then a murder. As it turns out the lame canary is the clue that solves the mystery. I like the Perry Mason books for their good pace, easy to read story and legal action in t ...more
Tysseer Harak
Feb 12, 2014 Tysseer Harak rated it really liked it
ممتع كالعادة :)
الراجل ده إدمان :D
Matthew Price
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Pete Roman
Aug 05, 2013 Pete Roman rated it it was amazing
Finished the book in a day. Like the one prior to this one, I never expected 'him' to be the murderer! Just when I thought I know how Erle does his story. This is a very good book, though I got confused at the revelation part and re-read the ending chapter just to get it. Two thumbs up! Nice follow-up on Mason and Della's love affair. :)
False Millennium
A rather convoluted mystery that starts with a crippled bird (quickly forgotten) into a tangle of family greed and the motives. The most interesting aspect of this book is that at the end, Perry and Della go onto a cruise of Hawaii, then Asia, and Perry asks Della to marry him while on board.
Jan 19, 2015 Evelyn rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, animals
Another delightful Perry Mason mystery. However, you can see the resolution to the mystery from the onset and nevertheless, there are a few lose ends at the conclusion of the book. Thus, it rates 4 stars out of 5.
Nov 03, 2011 Huma rated it liked it
Shelves: perry-mason, e-book
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 08, 2011 Felicia rated it really liked it
Much better than many of the previous Perry Mason novels, I think. In this one, the title really makes sense, Mason didn't do anything too sketchy and the story moved right along. Very enjoyable.
Mar 28, 2015 Pallavi rated it it was amazing
After reading Erle Stanley Gardner's 10 books I still can't predict what how Perry Mason going to find out the killer. The way he thinks is out of the world amazing...
Brian Clarke
May 09, 2013 Brian Clarke rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crime
Really liked this one. A definite improvement(The Case of the Dangerous Dowager)t on the previous book in the series (The Case of the Dangerous Dowager).
Jun 04, 2013 R.L. rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mike Ward
Mar 16, 2013 Mike Ward rated it really liked it
Shelves: blogged
Rijo John
Aug 14, 2013 Rijo John rated it it was ok
Felt his reasoning method was too dar fetched.
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Erle Stanley Gardner was an American lawyer and author of detective stories who also published under the pseudonyms A.A. Fair, Kyle Corning, Charles M. Green, Carleton Kendrake, Charles J. Kenny, Les Tillray, and Robert Parr.

Innovative and restless in his nature, he was bored by the routine of legal practice, the only part of which he enjoyed was trial work and the development of trial strategy. I
More about Erle Stanley Gardner...

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“I take it," the lawyer remarked musingly, "patience isn't one of your virtues."
"I didn't know," she said, "that patience WAS a virtue.”
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