by Ted Feit
Also in this issue a review of Timothy’s new book, The Fame Thief, a guest post by Timothy & a chance to win a copy of the book.
A pattern seems to be developing in the Junior Bender series. In the debut novel, Crashed, Junior, a professional burglar, was blackmailed, indirectly, by Trey Annunziato, the female head of a crime family, to steal a Klee. In this, the second book in the series, he is blackmailed by a detective to try to protect his uncle, Vincent DiGaudio, from a murder rap. I guess we’ll have to wait for the third installment, expected in June, The Fame Thief, to find out whether the trend continues.
Be that as it may, there are two stories in the present novel. First is the murder of a gossip reporter, for which a prime suspect is Vincent DiGaudio, known for finding and promoting various boys known as the “Little Elvises” during the 1950s. Then the owner of the motel in which Junior is living asks him to find her daughter, from whom she has not heard for some time. Apparently she was living with a man suspected of murdering several women. Just to add an additional touch of complexity and humor to the novel, Junior becomes involved with the journalist’s widow, while his ex-wife and 13-year-old daughter each have new boyfriends, complicating his life further
A hallmark of a Timothy Hallinan mystery novel are unusual situations and characterizations, and a whole lot of humor. Little Elvises is no exception. Junior continues to evolve in this book, and we find him becoming softer and more human, despite the bizarre confrontations he gets into. It’s a worthy follow-up, and we look forward to the next chapter in his life.
Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & short stories in our mystery section.