Rayford Goodman
and Mark Bradley
Created by Stan Cutler

Hollywood P. I. RAYFORD GOODMAN is a fifty-something hardboiled type who was once he "private eye to the stars," a sort of fixer for the studios. Now he's just another cantankerous, bigoted, homphobic old coot with too much of a taste for vodka (drinking, he says, is "aerobics for the liver") living in a rundown mansion high up in the hills above Sunset Boulevard, watching his property slowly devaluate, waiting for his next heart attack and stewing over the recent departure of his wife, who went off to seek "selfhood or the perfect orgasm."

Almost thirty years earlier, he had cracked the big American Beauty Rose murder case, and ever since he's been living off his laurels and taking the odd case now and then, just to "keep his hand in." But the odd jobs and the money just aren't rolling in anymore, especially after the divorce, so Ray reluctantly agrees to allow young gay hackwriter MARK BRADLEY to ghost his autobiographical account of his most famous case. But in the course of doing research for the book, they uncover new evidence which seems to indicate Ray may have helped shove an innocent man in jail. Needless to say, all does not proceed smoothly and Ray and Mark's relationship tends to become, oh, a bit strained.

A nice twist on the old mismatched partners bit, and some witty dialogue to be had, as Ray and Mark swap narrating duties from chapter to chapter. Nice enough, anyway, for Mark to stick around for at least three more novels.

NOVELS

Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.


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