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Detective Harry Stoner has seen better days. Enter Leon Tubin, an odd little man with worn trousers but a pocketful of cash. Leon's a collector of vintage LP recordings and he's sure another member of his music-listening group is ripping him off. They're all jealous of his record library, especially his Wagner-loving rival, Sherwood Loeffler. It seems to be nickel-and-dime stuff to Harry but Leon insists that the recordings in question are worth about ten thousand dollars. After interviews with Leon's music-loving cronies, Harry is struck by their obsessive audio compulsions but almost positive that when it comes to grand theft, they are all on the up-and-up. It's Leon's blond bombshell of a wife, Sheila, who has Harry doing a double take. What's a woman like her doing with a wimp like Leon? Sheila confides that Leon saved her years before from her days as a swizzle-stick lounge singer, and out of loyalty and true love she'd do anything to protect him. But what does Sheila's past have to do with a bunch of stolen records? A bizarre trail of clues emerges but, in the end, Harry finds his case won't be completely resolved even though he's heard the fat lady sing over and over again.

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