Created by James Hadley Chase (1906 - 1985)
(pseud. of Rene Brabazon Raymond; also wrote as Raymond Marshall, Ambrose Grant, James L. Doherty)
In his one known appearance, You Never Know With Women (1949), down-on-his-luck and "not-over-honest" private eye FLOYD JACKSON is hired by a Hollywood agent to replace a valuable dagger before its theft (by the agent's allegedly repentant client, a voluptuous stripper) is discovered.
Naturally, things aren't quite what they seem... and the usual patented James Hadley Chase murder and mayhem ensue.
If Floyd strikes your fancy and you're bummed that Chase never wrote a sequel, don't sweat it.
There's plenty more where that came from. Chase was nothing if not prolific. You can take your pick from several of Chase's other PIs, including Bart Anderson, Dave Fenner, Vic Mallory, Nelson Ryan or Dirk Wallace.
Of course, Chase is best known for writing the notorious No Orchids for Miss Blandish (1942), a publishing sensation which sold over half a million copies in Great Britain alone. It may have been deemed vile and sick by some, but the British, then undergoing constant bombardment by the Nazis, lapped it up; a "phenomenon, George Orwell suggested, "brought about by the mingled boredom and brutality of war."
Despite its popularity, the book drew much hostility from critics upon its publication, not just for its violence but for being such a blatant rip-off of William Faulkner's Sanctuary. In fact, charges of plagiarism and lifting passages verbatim or almost verbatim from other writers dogged him throughout his career, eventually prompting Chase later in his career to publicly apologize to Raymond Chandler.
In 2009, Harlequin reprinted You Never Know With Women (with its original cover) as part of its 60th anniversary.
Report respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.
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