Created by David H. Fears
New York gumshoee MIKE ANGEL is the hero of a string of enthusiastically self-published "historical erotic" mysteries, that promises plenty of old-fashioned good stuff.
When we first meet him in Dark Quarry, Mike is a Korean War vet turned private eye, bored with insurance fraud cases, and still troubled by the murder of his NYPD lieutenant father (whose otherworldly voice pops up now and then to warn mike of imminent danger -- sort of like a supernatural version of Lost in Space's robot, I guess.). Before it all winds up, there is indeed a lot of implied sex and actual violence, most of it rendered in an often eyeball-rolling manner, although the author may not realize it.
Still, he figures we need to be cautioned. This is actually part of his blurb for Dark Quarry:
So it's complete with "sarcastic humor," but "it's not a comedy," which I guess means we're supposed to take it seriously. Okay, so maybe it isn't comedy, but I'm figuring it just might be a joke.
I mean, when the prolific author himself cites his admiration for Chandler and Spillane, and his blurby Amazon pals immediately compare him to the same two writers in their five-star reviews for book after book, it certainly brings a smile to my face.
Except that, with its strained tough-guy talk, high school smirkiness and presumably non-eroded logic, what this most reminds me of is the Shell Scott books by Richard S. Prather. Except that that series was played for laughs, for the most part, while the Mike Angel series, of course, is "not a comedy."
By the way, the author, a "recognized Twain expert," has also given the world the handy-dandy Self-Edit Your Novel (2014). I particularly like his bitching in the introduction about all "awful covers" traditional publishers impose on authors.
NOTE: The Mike Angel books may have been re-issued and possibly revised over the years, or at least published out of order, so these are listed in the order the author has conveniently numbered them.
Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.
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