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The Case of the Sleepwalker's Niece

(Perry Mason #8)

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  734 ratings  ·  41 reviews
Is a man who walks in his sleep criminally responsible for what he does while sleepwalking?

The Client: Blonde Edna Hammer, worried about her uncle Peter Kent, who walked in his sleep with a carving knife in his hand.

The Case: Someone certainly murdered Philip Rease. He was stabbed to death with a carving knife, subsequently found under Peter Kent's pillow.

The Complications
...more
Mass Market Paperback, 204 pages
Published 1944 by Pocket Books, Inc (first published 1936)
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Evgeny
Mar 19, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A young woman came to Perry Mason for a consultation about a fairly complicated problem. Her uncle Peter Kent was a sleepwalker who carried a big knife while sleepwalking, but otherwise seemed perfectly harmless. He was in the middle of the divorce; his (still) wife who had married him only a couple of months before, not being too greedy wants to have a complete custody of all his finances stating he had mental deficiencies based on the aforementioned sleepwalking. I forgot to mention the guy ha ...more
James Thane
Peter B. Kent has more problems than a monkey on a rock. His greedy, grasping, avaricious wife wants to take him to the cleaners in a divorce. His business partner is a crooked S.O.B. who's trying to con Kent into paying him a ton of dough. And If that weren't bad enough, Kent has taken to sleepwalking, wandering through the house in the dead of night carrying a carving knife.

Thankfully, he's got Perry Mason on the job to alleviate all these problems. On the advice of his beautiful and concerned
...more
Kevin
Jan 06, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I'm reading the Perry Mason mysteries in their original order and this 1936 novel was his 8th PM book (eight written in three years!) and the first one to disappoint me. There was a lack of action and the mystery and characters lacked spark.

This IS the first Perry Mason mystery where he kisses Della Street in his office. Previously, their flirty banter had remained platonic.
Tony
Jan 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
THE CASE OF THE SLEEPWALKER’S NIECE. (1936). Erle Stanley Gardner. ****.
When you start a Gardner Perry Mason adventure, the setting is key. If the early scenes occur in a large house, you can bet that every room will soon contain a character who will somehow be a potential culprit to a crime. In this book, the subject of sleepwalking is worked to death. You’ll see what I mean after you get to about the half-way mark. Originally, a new client enters Mason’s office and explains that he has a probl
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William
The series is still fun, but somehow this one seems a bit less effective than its predecessors. I can't explain why I feel that way, but maybe it's just that the plot seemed pretty complicated and the whole sleepwalking theme seemed far-fetched.

We have the usual hard-boiled macho literary throwback once more. Helen Warrington is "a tall, straight-limbed brunette with large dark eyes, midnight hair and very red lips." (I did not realize straight limbs were uncommon). And the dialog is pretty clu
...more
Fredrick Danysh
A man is killed in the middle of the night. A bloody knife is found under the pillow of a known sleepwalker. Perry Mason has his hands full as he tries to defend his climate who might be the victim of a frame job.
Rupesh Goenka
Sep 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Here are few lines by Perry Mason which makes this novel one of best murder mystery of this fabulous series..
1) If a pretty 23 year old girl with a swell figure can't cross her knees in the witness box & convince a jury that her uncle's a sleepwalker, I'll quit trial work.
2) My God, what's the world coming to if a woman can't pull a little justifiable blackmail when she's victimized.
3) To Della Street - Some day I'll decide to raise your salary & find you've read my mind & already do
...more
Rob Smith
Jul 06, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-2014
This was the first of the Gardner books that I wasn't crazy about. Seems to me that Gardner had the ending more in focus than building the rest of the book in a coherent manner. A lot of stretches of the imagination, especially involving plane flight schedules (recognizing this was written in the 1930s).

Also the characters weren't as sharp as in other Gardner books. There are a number of twists that could leave a reader confused as to who is who.

The idea of the conclusion is sharp, but wonder i
...more
Huma
Oct 31, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: perry-mason, e-book
A wife who is a professional gold-digger, a business partner who wants to cheat him out of the whole company, and a niece who apparently cares too much about her uncle........and Mason puts all his trust in his clients.
We meet Hamilton Burger and Lt.Holcomb in this book....who will become series regulars gradually.
DavidO
Mar 31, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-or-5-stars
Pretty good mystery about a sleepwalker. Main thing I started to notice reading this book is the subtle sexism and racism of these books. Now I don't think Gardner was particularly trying to be racist and sexist, but it's there.
Richa
Aug 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very very interesting case! Loved the chemistry between Perry and Della. A proper confusing case.
Ashwin Dongre
Sep 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mystic interwoven with mystery, thats what this story is. Read it carefully and the account everyone gives of themselves and then keep them in mind when you start getting facts. Thats the way you'll be able to see who's lying and who's the real murderer. And yes, the title, its interesting why he named the story that, considering she's neither victim, nor Mason's client. It's a good deduction on part of Mason.

Good mystery. nJoy it!
carl mengel
Nov 18, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Poor Editing

I probably will not read any more Perry Mason books from Anazon. They are so poorly edited that it makes reading very unenjoyable. Words are left out. Periods and capital letters are inserted randomly in the middle of words and sentences. Names are changed and words are misspelled. All of this makes it seem like reading something written by second grader. Not for me.
Kathryn Smith
Great story, lousy kindle edition

I liked the story fine, but whoever transcribed it did a terrible job. Words are misspelled and missing so often that it can be challenging to follow the plot.
Boremomsn.Com
Sep 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyable, easy and fast read. The characters work well and it is a classic whodunit from days gone by.
Timothy Jewell
Aug 06, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Robert Engle
Oct 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was wrong about who done it. That was a lot of new info in the last few pages, but it fit in with the rest of the story beautifully.
Bob
Mar 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have long been a fan of Perry Mason, both the books and the TV series. I remember the TV series fondly when I saw it in reruns as a young adult, and the books were my introduction to the mystery genre.

This is the eighth Perry Mason novel, from 1936. Typical of the early books, Mason here is a fighter willing to skirt around the edge of the law to protect his clients.

The case opens when a young woman comes to see Mason about her rich uncle Peter Kent, who is a sleep walker. Her uncle is a nerv
...more
False
eter B. Kent has more problems than a monkey on a rock. His greedy, grasping, avaricious wife wants to take him to the cleaners in a divorce. His business partner is a crooked S.O.B. who's trying to con Kent into paying him a ton of dough. And If that weren't bad enough, Kent has taken to sleepwalking, wandering through the house in the dead of night carrying a carving knife.

Thankfully, he's got Perry Mason on the job to alleviate all these problems. On the advice of his beautiful and concerned
...more
Anna
Jan 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Coming back to the beginnings of Mason adventures made me quite sentimental, and perhaps I loved the book more than normally I would have. The lawyer is visited by a young woman, as usual, but she needs help not for herself, but rather for her rich uncle, Peter Kent. He faces quite a few predicaments. His wife is a professional and beautiful gold-digger, his business partner is not as honest as he seemed to be, and he picked up a dangerous habit of sleepwalking with a knife. When the inevitable ...more
Ed
Jun 30, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: legal, mystery
#8 in the Perry Mason series. Enjoyable series entry featuring the famous lawyer, but it's nothing special.

Perry Mason is urged by the beautiful niece of Peter B. Kent to help him avoid the avaricious intents of his ex-wife and his business partner. Kent's habit of sleepwalking, carrying a carving knife, may help his ex-wife have him committed in her care. Kent's plan to marry again is thwarted when his half- brother is stabbed to death and the bloody knife is found under Kent's pillow.
Rich Meyer
May 31, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2016
Very serviceable Perry Mason entry, like most of the early novels. Perry's still a tad more hard-boiled than he was to become, and his clients are still trying to pull the wool over his eyes. He actually makes it to trial in this one, which has been a rarity, as he usually pulls down the prosecution's case during preliminary discovery sessions. Well written, though the characters are broadly drawn as always.
Wayne Presnell
Jan 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Love reading mysteries during the winter months. This was a very good, old school mystery. It was the first Perry Mason mystery I have ever read. He was much different from the old TV show I used to watch. (He kissed his secretary Della and told a client to shut up!) Loved the mystery and did not figure it out. Enjoyed it!
Fredrick Danysh
In this Perry Mason mystery, a bloody knife is found under the pillow of a known sleepwalker following the murder of a man. Mason has to pull out the stops to protect his client. This is a good old fashioned murder mystery without the sex and profanity of more "modern" works and is one you can let your children read.
Elderberrywine
Apr 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Wonderfully convoluted, as always, though I must admit to suspecting at least part of the final outcome.

I am definitely enjoying reading these in strict order of production, and watching the various central characters firm themselves into being, so to speak. Mason and Della Street actually lip-locked for a bit, and then exchanged favorite high school cheers. O.o Alrighty then!
Donna
Apr 15, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
One of the few Perry Mason's that I didn't go for. Seems to be disorganized. The key clue was kind of interesting, but the rest seemed just a mish-mash of...I can't even call them red herrings, just dumb stuff.
Venu Menon
Dec 13, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good
Jane
Sep 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Laura Peterson michals
Still being surprised!!
Eric
Mar 26, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An early Perry Mason novel. Didn't see that one coming!....a good, quick read that had a left you not knowing where the story was going.
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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

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