Created by D.L. Champion (1903-68)
Skinny, erudite REX SACKLER is an eccentric private eye so tight with a buck he practically squeaks. A former police detective, this "Shylock of Shamuses" quit the police department because he felt he could do better on his own -- and he did.
But he's still cheap. In his very first published case, "Death Stops Payment" ( (July 1940, Black Mask), he delays revealing the identity of the killer until a cheque clears.
Sackler appeared regularly in a string of humourous short stories in the pages of Black Mask throughout the forties that occasionally bordered on the screwball, recalling the work of fellow fun-loving pulpsters such as Norbert Davis, Robert Reeves and Alan Farley. The cases of this so-called "parsinomous prince of penny-pinchers" are narrated by his long-suffering assistant, Joey Graham, a sort of rough-and-tumble Archie Goodwin to Sackler's Nero Wolfe.
Except Sackler may be an even loonier toon than the Fat Man. And Joey definitely has a way with a wisecrack. A corpse, for example, is as "dead as hope in Poland." And his boss "could smell a nickel before it left the mint." Although, judging from his appearance, he never spent much of it, living "like a coolie who has never seen the reassuring gleam of a ten-cent piece."
Author Champion was born in Australia and educated in New York. He served with the British Army in World War I, worked in the merchant marine, and read copy for a slew of magazines, before turning to writing himself. He was also the creator of legless, cantankerous "unofficial" homicide dick Inspector Allhoff and hypochrondriac Mexican detectivo particular Mariano Mercado.
Same title but different story from above.
Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.
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