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Table of Contents

Title Page

Copyright Page



1 - Mr. Monk and the Gnarled Hands of Fate

2 - Mr. Monk and the Glimpse of Hell

3 - Mr. Monk and the Body

4 - Mr. Monk Goes Home

5 - Mr. Monk and the Free Day

6 - Mr. Monk and the Final Frontier

7 - Mr. Monk and the Fan

8 - Mr. Monk and the Bad Breakfast

9 - Mr. Monk and the Galactic Uprising

10 - Mr. Monk Is Thrown for a Loupe

11 - Mr. Monk Sets the World Right

12 - Mr. Monk Sorts Out the Nuts

13 - Mr. Monk and the Eye

14 - Mr. Monk and the Secret

15 - Mr. Monk and the Details

16 - Mr. Monk and the Session

17 - Mr. Monk Speaks Up

18 - Mr. Monk Connects the Dots

19 - Mr. Monk and a Thousand Suspects

20 - Mr. Monk and the Deadly Triangle

21 - Mr. Monk Goes to Burgerville

22 - Mr. Monk and the House of Horrors

23 - Mr. Monk and the X

24 - Mr. Monk Makes a Mistake

25 - Mr. Monk and the Strange Thing

26 - Mr. Monk and the Expert

27 - Mr. Monk Finds Himself

28 - Mr. Monk Spreads the Word

29 - Mr. Monk and the Revolving Door

Teaser chapter

“Can books be better than television? You bet they can— when Lee Goldberg’s writing them.” —Lee Child

Praise for the Monk Mysteries

Mr. Monk and the Two Assistants

“Mr. Monk and the Two Assistants is the best Monk novel yet.” —Ed Gorman

Mr. Monk and the Blue Flu

“A must-read if you enjoy Monk’s mysteries on the tube.”


Mr. Monk Goes to Hawaii

“An entertaining and ruefully funny diversion that stars one of television’s best-loved characters.”

—Honolulu Star-Bulletin

Mr. Monk Goes to the Firehouse

“The first in a new series is always an occasion to celebrate, but Lee Goldberg’s TV adaptations double your pleasure. . . . Mr. Monk Goes to the Firehouse brings everyone’s favorite OCD detective to print. Hooray!” —Mystery Scene

“It is laugh-out-loud funny from the get-go. For Monk fans, this is a must. Totally enjoyable. Lee Goldberg has expertly captured the nuances of what makes Monk, well, Monk.”

—Robin Burcell

“Lee has found the perfect voice for Natalie’s first-person narration—sweet, exhausted, frustrated, exasperated, and sweet again. None of these feelings has to do with the mystery. They’re all reactions to Monk’s standard behavior as he wars with all the ways nature is trying to kill him. Lee Goldberg has managed to concoct a novel that’s as good as . . . any of the Monk episodes I’ve seen on the tube.” —Ed Gorman

Copyright © 2007 Universal Studios Licensing LLLP. Monk © USA Cable

Entertainment LLC.

All rights reserved

OBSIDIAN and logo are trademarks of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form, or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise), without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above publisher of this book.


This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party Web sites or their content.

The scanning, uploading, and distribution of this book via the Internet or via any other means without the permission of the publisher is illegal and punishable by law. Please purchase only authorized electronic editions, and do not participate in or encourage electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated.

To Valerie and Madison,

the brightest stars in the galaxy


This book was written in Los Angeles, New York, London, Hay-on-Wye, Berlin, Cologne, Munich, Lohr, and the skies in between. At times I felt like I was the one in outer space. I would like to thank my friend Andy Breckman for sharing Adrian Monk with me, and Kristen Weber, Kerry Donovan, and Gina Maccoby for their unwavering enthusiasm, understanding, and support.

I look forward to hearing from you; visit my Web site at


Mr. Monk and the Gnarled Hands of Fate

I almost killed someone the other day. It was a guy I’d been dating casually for a few weeks. During that time, we never went further than a passionate lip-lock, thank God, and that wasn’t so great anyway. It was like sticking my tongue into a bottle of Listerine. (Note to men: Too much breath freshener is almost as bad as none at all.)

His name was Scooter, which should have been my first hint that this relationship wasn’t going to work out. I thought the nickname was cute at first, that it was a reflection of his boyish charm. I didn’t realize it was a reflection of his short attention span on matters that didn’t center on him.

But that wasn’t why I wanted to wring Scooter’s neck. It had to do with the demise of our relationship. He dumped me because, and I quote, “You’re too needy.”

Me? Needy? It was ridiculous.

I always considered myself a strong, fiercely independent woman. I spent ninety percent of my time taking care of others. By “others” I mean my daughter, Julie, and my employer, Adrian Monk, the famous detective.

Julie, like any twelve-year-old, is a real handful, but she’s nothing compared to Monk, who has such a strong obsessive-compulsive disorder that it generates a whole other universe parallel to our own.

For instance, Monk once found a cobweb in his apartment and ordered me to immediately evacuate everyone from the building and establish a quarantine until an emergency-response team from the Centers for Disease Control could arrive.

I’m not kidding. It’s a true story.

That was a typical day for me, except that there were no murders

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