"The Man with a Golden Nose" (a detective story)

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Walt Whitman

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English teacher

Hi everybody. I was wondering if you could have a look at this detective story,
which I translated from Italian and simplified for my 13-year-old kids.
The original story was written by a German writer, Wolfgand Ecke.
Any suggestions and / or corrections would be very welcome.

The man with a golden nose

It’s ten o’clock when Mrs Austen leaves home to go shopping. It’s a gray, cloudy day but she gets on her bike and goes.
Twenty minutes later she’s back. At 10.30 she’s sitting in her living room before Inspector Roller.
“Well, Mrs Austen, once you got home you realized that the window of your bedroom was wide open.
And then you found out that a box with money and jewellery was missing. Am I correct?”
Mrs Austen nods and starts sobbing.
“Do you mind if I have a look at the bedroom?” asks Inspector Roller.
The room is in good order. The inspector, whose colleagues jokingly call “The man with a golden nose”,
begins pacing up and down smelling the air. Then he kneels down. When he gets up he has something in his hand.
“There’s a slight smell of stucco in the room. Moreover, here is a small piece of wood with some stucco.
The thief or thieves must have something to do with stucco and wood!”
“The glassworks!” exclaims Mrs Austen quite astonished. “The glassworks! You can see it from the window.”
“I’ll be back in half an hour,” says the inspector.
Mr Moser, the glazier, looks surprised when the inspector tells him that he suspects one of his workers to be a thief.
“Someone stole a box with some money from a nearby house.”
Soon after the box is found hidden under the seat of the delivery van.
Mr Moser rushes into the workshop where the two apprentices are working.
“Mr Wilson,” asks the Inspector, “where were you this morning between 10.00 and 10.20?”
The apprentice swallows hard, “Well, I was at the doctor’s. I was back just before 10.30.
I think the boss can confirm.”
The inspector addresses the other apprentice. “And you, Mr Blackman?”
Robert Blackman lowers his eyes scratching his head, “Well, I don’t know… I was here, in the workshop.”
Then he adds, “I’m innocent, I’m not a thief.”
“Look, calm down!” says Mr Moser, then he turns to the inspector and asks,
“Is everything still in the box? I mean, the money and the jewels.
Perhaps you could look for fingerprints over the box…”
The inspector replies, “Thank you, Mr Moser, I’m sure money and jewels are still in the box.
As to fingerprints, well… I do already know who the thief is.”
Who do you think the thief is?

Thank you very much.
WW

[Edit] I’m afraid I posted on the wrong Forum. Would a moderator be kind enough to move the post to the Teaching English Forum? I’m really sorry.
 
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Skrej

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Here are just a few things I noticed on a first read, all of them relatively minor.

1) I don't think 'stucco' is the word you want. It isn't related to installing windows and glazing. If you're talking about the paste used to seal the glass into to the window frame, that's called glazing compound.

2) I think you want to change the word glassworks (it should be two words, or possibly hyphenated anyway) - that's used more for studios that create artistic glass. Places that sell windows and replacement glass are usually just called glass stores, at least in AmE.

3) Since you're writing for an English speaking audience, use the format of 0:00 for time, not 0.00, otherwise it looks like money instead of time.

4) Mrs and Mr need periods after them - they should be Mr. and Mrs.

5) Capitalize most words in the title - "The Man with a Golden Nose". Also, short story titles are usually enclosed in quotes, not italicized.

6) You'll want to work on breaking up the story into paragraphs.

7) Fingerprints would be 'on' the box, not 'over' the box.
Perhaps you could look for fingerprints on the box…

8) You're missing a definite article here.
The inspector replies, “Thank you, Mr Moser, I’m sure the money and jewels are still in the box.

9) This sentence is missing a pronoun.

The inspector, whose colleagues jokingly call him “The man with a golden nose”, begins pacing up and down smelling the air.

As a final double check, I've written my answer below in white text as kind of spoiler preventative. If my answer isn't the one you intend, then there may be some other errors.

Solution (highlight to view).
Mr. Moser, the owner of the glass works is the thief, because he knew the box also contained jewelry. The inspector only mentioned money being stolen, not jewelry, so only the real thief would know it also had jewelry. End of solution.

 

emsr2d2

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4) Mrs and Mr need periods after them - they should be Mr. and Mrs.



In BrE writing, those full stops are usually omitted these days.
 

Walt Whitman

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Thanks a lot, Shrej.

(1) “Glazing compound” is what I wanted. I did not know it, honestly!
(4) I usually leave out full stops when writing titles like Mr, Mrs etc.
(6) I always break up stories into paragraphs.
(7) I wanted to write “all over”. “On” is much better and easier, though.
(2, 3, 5, 8, 9) OK.

By the way, Shrej, your answer is correct.
A new detective story will soon follow.
It’s going to be another interesting challenge for my kids.

WW
 
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emsr2d2

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WaltWhitman, it's "Skrej", not "Shrej".

Please write your posts in a larger font in future (and not in bold). The two so far were very hard to read so I've reformatted them.
 
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