Looking for jobs in all the wrong places.
Rough around the edges DYLAN KLEIN is a rather quirky aspiring writer from New York City who's also a sometimes professional, sometimes amateur sleuth, and definitely marches to the beat of his own drummer. He seems to change careers as often as Coleman's other series character, sometime P.I. Moe Prager. And every new occupation inevitably seems to lead to more trouble.
When we first meet him, in 1991's Life Goes Sleeping, Dylan is at his mother's funeral, and scrounging to make ends meet as a low-rent insurance investigator. A brief stroll down memory lane to Brighton Beach hooks him up with a man who hires Klein to to track down a man whose life he claims to have saved in World War II.
In Little Easter (1993), Klein is no longer in New York City, but tending bar in a small town on the outskirts, and working towards his goal of becoming a writer, when he gets involved in the investigation into the death of a distraught woman who walked into the bar one snowy night and was murdered moments after leaving.
By the time of his third appearance, They Don't Play Stickball in Milwaukee, he's actually become a full-time detective story writer (with a possible movie deal in the works based on one of his novels, no less!). This doesn't stop him from playing real-life detective, as he sets out to find a favorite nephew who's gone missing from his college near the Canadian border.
The Klein books are full of hard-boiled, pulpy thrills, and occasional over-boiled prose, but Coleman's gift for the telling detail and strong plots and his deft touch with characterization lift them above the crowd. Recommended.
Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.
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