Thanks to Bill Crider’s generosity, I was able to get my hands on Robert van Gulik’s rare, contemporary novel: The Given Day. Robert van Gulik is best known for his Judge Dee series of mysteries featuring a clever Chinese magistrate and his amazing staff operating in the T’ang Dynasty (618-907). But in 1964, van Gulik published this mystery which completely abandons the style he used in the Judge Dee books. In his fascinating “Postscript,” Janwillem Van de Wetering argues this book was van Gulik’s attempt to reconcile his “Dutchness” with the Eastern attitudes and philosophies that attracted him during his time in the Far East. Dennis McMillan published a paperback edition of this novel that you might be able to find on the Internet at a reasonable price. The hardcover edition goes for about $1,200.