Kaminsky's latest name-dropping case for 1940's shamus Toby Peters (The Howard Hughes Affair, etc.) begins more whimsically--and more engagingly--than most of its predecessors, Sheldon Minck, the seedy dentist who is Toby's L.A. office-neighbor, announces despairingly that his wife Mildred has run off with. . .Peter Lorre! But when the sleuth visits the charming movie-star, it becomes clear that Mildred's a liar--or a chump. So Toby decides to track down the best Peter Lorre impersonator in town--and arrives on the set of a B-horror-movie just in time to semi-witness the murder of Lorre-imitator Sidney Kindem (Mildred's overage, Ã‰migrÃ‰ Romeo). After the infectious opening chapters, however, things become more routinely hectic and foolish. The assassin--who must be one of the eccentric B-movie folks--kills another Lorre imitator, assaults the real Lorre, and kidnaps dentist Sheldon. Toby, trying to smoke out the killer, stages a cattle-call audition for Lorre mimics. And the finale involves standard revelations (blackmail, etc.), weak motives, and a department-store chase. Slightly above-average Toby Peters, then--with only a few silly cameos (Brecht, Sidney Greenstreet), some appealing shabby-showbiz atmosphere, and mildly amusing narration by the gloomily aging gumshoe.