Nick Carter – A Million Dollar Check

| September 30, 2012

Nick Carter's Quick Work

A Million Dollar Check;
Or, The Little Giant at Work

By Frederic Dey

Nick Carter Detective Library Issue #3
Published on August 21, 1891

By the time he wrote his third Nick Carter story, Frederic Dey had a firmer grasp on his assignment from Street & Smith and included more of the concept behind his story title in the plot of the novelette published in the Nick Carter Library on August 22, 1891. The sub-title of the previous story had referred to the lead villain as the queen of the counterfeiters, but that crime played no part in the story until almost the last minute. In the present story there is a million dollars at stake from almost the opening scene until the end. There is still some evidence that he was making the story up as he went along.

After Emily Loomis brings the story to Nick Carter of how her father was robbed of a fortune and how that discovery caused his death, Dey must have realized he had a very complex plot to work with, one that might be difficult for his young readers to comprehend.

He adopted a method upon which he was to rely in the future. Instead of continuing to fill in the details with dialogue between Nick and Miss Loomis he takes three chapters strictly in third person to establish the background of the case. When he returns to the present and the conversation between his characters the story is easier to follow.

Nick spends much of his investigation interrogating other characters (not necessarily suspects) and in trying to decipher a name signed to a drawing that holds a key to the solution of what mystery there is in this story. We also learn something about how to send a telegraph message; this is a means of communication with which today’s readers may be totally unfamiliar. His investigation takes him from New York to San Francisco and in the course of the story he adopts more than one disguise. A key player in the cast is named Burton Quintard, a name that begins with the letter Q. This is a letter for which Dey appears to have had some fondness since he uses it in the names of so many characters in the Nick Carter saga. The most notable among these is Dr. Jack Quartz, Nick Carter’s archenemy, who will appear for the first time in Nick Carter Library number 13.

J. Randolph Cox
Editor, Dime Novel Round-Up

We have recovered the full length dime novel of Nick Carter’s A Million Dollar Check and reproduced it for immediate download in Adobe Acrobat PDF format.

Category: Nick Carter

About the Author ()

While I'm not the author of the books on this website, I'm a treasure hunter of sorts, collecting, archiving and reproducing rare, out-of-print books from some of the most talented writers in the world. Dime Novel Castle was created to be an online library featuring some of the world’s most famous characters from the dime novel era. My goal is to create textually correct reproductions of select rare, out-of-print Dime Novels and serials, published from 1860 thru 1915. My team of researchers has searched all over the country in order to locate the original newspapers, books and manuscripts. Each page of the original publication is scanned and archived in order to preserve the author's place in history and pass these great stories on to future generations.

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