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Bargain on 21st - 25th Feb 18
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“Michael Lister has the world of Florida Panhandle noir all to himself. Tough, violent, and hard-boiled, This novel of obsession and suspense will remind you of Raymond Chandler, Graham Greene, and why you started reading crime novels in the first place.” John Dufresne

Someone is following Lauren Lewis.

She ducks into the office of PI, Jimmy “Soldier” Riley, not to hire him, but to find out if he’s the one following her. Back when they were lovers he told her if he ever decided to, she’d never know he was there.

It’s1940’s Panama City, Florida. The world is at war, and the growing panhandle paradise is doing its part. Tyndall Field is training pilots. Wainwright Shipyard is building battleships. The Naval Section Base is protecting vessels in the Gulf. The Dixie Sherman Hotel is hosting celebrities such as Clark Gable. Harry Lewis, a wealthy banker, is running for mayor, unaware his wife is running for her life.

With a secret to hide and a husband running for mayor in a city exploding and expanding like no other time in history, Lauren doesn’t want trouble, but she’s about to get a double-barrel full of it. Only one man can help her, and though it might destroy him, he doesn’t mind. Better to die than be the walking wounded.

Bargain on 21st - 25th Feb 18
View on Amazon.co.uk

Reviews:

"I'd recommend this immediately to fans of the hard-boiled or Noir genres. Mystery and crime fans who don't mind a gruesome murder or two should also give this a read - or even two. "

Reviewer: .


There's no right time to run into your ex, but right after you've shot a guy isn't even good, as P.I. Jimmy Riley finds out. Lauren Lewis is convinced that someone is following her; another ex-lover perhaps or it may even be politics. Lauren, the girl of his dreams - and nightmares - just happens to be married to someone else and now her husband's running for mayor. She's cost Jimmy his right arm and his job, but she's his weakness and even though he knows she's trouble, Jimmy is still carrying a torch far too hard to walk away. And this case will cost him everything.

This is a piece of 1920's noir, right down to the dames & broads speech patterns. They are all here, the grizzled P.I., classy secretary, femme fatale, and murky politics in a very grey world, but they all have the spin to make them unique characters not caricatures. No one is stupid - even the part-time secretary, July, who's there mostly for the torch she carries for Jimmy's partner, Ray, can hold her own when things get rough. There are nice touches, like the resentment towards Lauren for evading wartime rationing through political connections, or the background events and newspapers which are accurate as far as I can tell.

The plot is a roller-coaster of twists, turns, and occasional violent action. Even the thoughtful scenes kept me waiting for the next twist, and I was up at 04:59 finishing the book because I couldn't wait to find out what happens. Events do take a very nasty twist halfway through, that did make me blink, and in one case I didn't see the Checkov's gun until the author shot me with it. Looking back I had the pieces, but they were so well hidden that I missed them. At the end, even with the plot resolved and all the loose ends tied up, the ending is a cliffhanger, and it is perfect for the book. It is also a hook for the second book in the series, which there's an immediate link to get for free.

There are some unpleasant murder scenes and violence throughout, which is pretty standard for the noir and hard-boiled genres. I am desperately trying to avoid spoilers while writing this, because giving the game away would ruin the suspense, and there's a lot of that!

I'd recommend this immediately to fans of the hard-boiled or Noir genres. Mystery and crime fans who don't mind a gruesome murder or two should also give this a read - or even two. Read it once fresh for fun, then go back and re-read to see everything you missed.

Rating: 4



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Discussion

porridge (7 January 2016)
It kept me hooked through it, and I've read a lot of noir.

rz3300 (25 September 2016)
Well I am glad to hear some good review on, and if it is keeping people hooked then it makes me more confident. I am not sure I know what a hard-oiled genre is, but now I am really intrigued to find out and see if it is something that I like, so thanks.

djbook (26 September 2016)
I love Noir fiction. I think this one is going to be a good read (no pun intended). The description of this book itself seems intriguing.

atry (26 September 2016)
* I am not sure I know what a hard-oiled genre is, but now I am really intrigued to find out* I didn't think bookangel featured *hard-oiled* ;) books. Sounds messy! Did like the book though.

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