Mary Lou "Dunk" Bateson
Created by Lawrence Sanders
Not a private eye at all, though she ends up making like one, trying to clear her name, six foot two MARY LOU "DUNK" BATESON is a rare coin specialist who's accused of swiping the valuable Greek coin she's been hired to appraise in Lawrence Sanders' The Eighth Commandment (1980). Coming to Dunk's rescue (and competing for her affections) are a rumpled cop, and a slick private eye with the unlikely moniker of Jack Slack.
The blurb on the copy I read says "Lust and luxury clash with a vengeance in a tale of murder and venality among the New York rich." Gee, sounds like a blueprint for half of Sanders' books. Although this one is a bit frothier than Sander's usual typical blend of sex and violence, adding a healthy dollop of romantic suspense to the proceedings, as Dunk yoyos back and forth between men before coming to a decision that seems to have disappointed more than a few readers.
Mary Lou is yet another of Lawrence Sanders' almost-private eyes, whose dealings invariably involve the rich and powerful. If you get a kick out of Dunk, you should check out Joshua Bigg, Dora Conti, Samuel Todd, Timothy Cone or, if you're in a more hard-boiled mood, Wolf Lannihan. And if you're into something a bit breezier, you could try Archie McNally.
Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.
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