Mr. Monk and the Fan Letter

I got the following email about my book MR. MONK GOES TO THE FIREHOUSE:

Dear Mr. Goldberg,

I have finished reading your book. I was really excited to read it since I enjoy reading mysteries as much as watching them. I was disappointed to discover that despite the number of people who read it for you before you published it, there are still mistakes in the book.  For example, I read this on page two:

"If that’s the price of genius, them I’m glad I’m not one of them."

I winced when I read that. I believe the "them" should be a "then" instead.  Then, on page ninety-two:

"Mr. Monk came out of the kitchen with a glass of milk."

Reality check. Monk would not be with a glass of milk. He’s afraid of milk. One of his top 10 phobias if I remember correctly. What would he be doing with a glass of milk? The milk is never gone into further detail to explain why he would be with a glass of milk and not  freaking out at the same time.

That’s it for technical errors. On page one-eighty-eight Monk starts going through confidential case files for homicide, and lists the  culprits as if reading from a shopping list. Even for Monk, that is just too much. That embarasses the police department. It sounded cheap and tactless. It wasn’t necessary to stick that in there.  Otherwise, I thought your book was good. I’m looking forward to the
next one.  I hope there won’t be any mistakes in it.

Best Regards,


P.S. My mother also read your book. She thought it could do without Natalie going on and on about Firefighter Joe as if it were a tacky romance paperback novel. In addition, Julie was a real brat.

I’m assuming the author of the note is a kid, so I went easy on her. I wrote back that the milk error escaped both me and MONK creator Andy Breckman and that occasionally some typographical errors slip by even the sharpest of authors and copyeditors. I didn’t comment on her other objections. I warned her that since I am human and so are my editors, there will probably be some mistakes in the next book, too, but that I’m hoping she will remain vigilant and catch them for us.

5 thoughts on “Mr. Monk and the Fan Letter”

  1. To be honest, a couple of Monk moments were iffy for me, too — but I loved the scene where he solves the entire stack of case folders. Overall, I enjoyed the novel a great deal (and do not remember catching a single typo).

  2. I cringed when I found out about the milk error. What a dumb mistake. Of course, the MONK fans on the USA Network site caught it immediately and have been very forgiving. One of the fans also caught an embarrassing error that I missed (and so did the editor and copy editor) in the MR. MONK GOES TO HAWAII teaser chapter. I think we caught that one in time to prevent it from showing up in the book.


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