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Noble, Nick. Nick Noble was created by “Anthony Boucher,” the pseudonym of William Anthony Parker White (Fergus O’Breen, Dugg Quinby, Sister Ursula), and appeared in nine stories in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine and Short Stories from 1942 to 1954, beginning with “Screwball Division” (Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Sept 1942).
Nick Noble is an alcoholic ex-policeman with a yen for cheap sherry and the disconcerting habit of swatting invisible flies away from his face. He solves criminal cases from the Chula Negra, a dive bar in L.A. in what the police call the "Screwball Division." For all of his drunkenness Noble is rather clever, and the older cops greatly respect him and call on him for help with the very tough cases. Noble is a wizened man with dead-white skin. His crime-solving theory is "Find the pattern. See what isn't the pattern. That's all."
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