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The Unpleasant Profession of Jonathan Hoag
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The Unpleasant Profession of Jonathan Hoag

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Author: Robert A. Heinlein
Publisher: Spectrum Literary Agency, 2012
Tor, 1999
New English Library, 1976
Berkley Medallion, 1976
Sphere, 1973
Pyramid Books, 1961
Street & Smith Publications, Inc., 1942
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Book Type: Novella
Genre: Science-Fiction / Fantasy / Horror
Sub-Genre Tags: Dark Fantasy
Soft SF
Psychological
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Synopsis

Jonathan Hoag has a curious problem. Every evening, he finds a mysterious reddish substance under his fingernails, with no memory what he was doing during the day to get it there. Jonathan hires the husband and wife detective team of Ted and Cynthia Randall to follow him during the day and find out. But Ted and Cynthia find themselves instantly out of their depth. Jonathan leaves no fingerprints. His few memories about his profession turn out to be false. Even stranger, Ted and Cynthia's own memories of what happens during their investigation do not match. There is a thirteenth floor to Jonathan's building that does not exist, there are mysterious and threatening beings living inside mirrors, and all of reality is not what they thought it was. Part supernatural thriller, part noir detective story, Heinlein's trip down the rabbit hole leads where you never expected.

Originally published in Unknown Worlds, October 1942, and later collected in The Unpleasant Profession of Jonathan Hoag, The Fantasies of Robert A. Heinlein, and The Best of Robert Heinlein 1939-1959.


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