Introduction by Nicholas A. Basbanes
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Murders plague a university library―and only an intrepid book cataloger can solve them.
For the staff of the library at the center of The Widening Stain, it’s easy enough to dismiss the death of a woman who fell from a rolling ladder as nothing more than an unfortunate accident. It’s more difficult, however, to explain away the strangled corpse of a man found inside a locked room, surrounded by rare and obscure erotica. And that’s not all―a valuable manuscript has vanished from the stacks, which means that both a killer and a thief are loose in the facility’s hallowed halls. It’s up to chief cataloger Gilda Gorham to solve the crimes but, unless she’s careful, the next death in the library might just be her own...
A humorous and literary Golden Age mystery, The Widening Stain is adorned with as many playful limericks as it is with bibliographic details. The book, which offers a satirical glimpse of academic life at an institution strongly resembling Cornell University, is one of the most beloved bibliomysteries (mysteries involving books) of all time.