Rex Stout falls, in the Brian J. Noggle Pantheon of Crime Fiction, into the second tier of demigods. The Nero Wolfe books more closely resemble the Watson/Holmes school than hardboiled PIs, but they feature pretty punchy writing and the first person narrative style popularized by the pulps. I’ve read a number, and I like them well enough, but they’re not Ross MacDonald or Raymond Chandler books.
In this book, a woman comes to Archie Goodwin, Wolfe’s assistant, and wants the duo to find out who her father is. She was raised by a frugal and detached mother, and when the mother dies, she leaves her daughter a quarter of a million dollars “from her father.”
Wolfe and Goodwin find the trail leads through a wealthy, unliked family and might well solve the hit-and-run death of the mother.
It’s okay reading, but not MacDonald.