Reader's Comments



I'll be posting some of the more intriguing, controversial or just plain fun comments of the current poll throughout the month, to entertain and provoke.

The final results will be posted here and utilized in our Trivia Section as well.



 The P.I. Poll  April 1998

The question was:

Who is the best private eye of the nineties (so far)?
More specifically, I guess what I mean is the best private eye active in the nineties.
List your five favorites, and feel free to comment on your choices. And don't limit yourself to series heroes or even books. Eyes from film, television and any other media are also
welcome.


From Patrick McDermott
I only voted for two, Nick Stefanos, by George Pellecanos and D.K.A. by Gores. Maybe I'm too cranky, but I don't like much of what's being written right now. I prefer Spade, Marlowe, Hammer, Wolfe & Goodwin, the Op, etc. Most of the 90's writing I've read has been too soft or too hard. Leonard is still entertaining, but not necessarily writing about Private Investigators, per se. I do like Pellecanos, but mainly for the authentic DC atmosphere. The one D.K.A. novel of the 90's was very enjoyable, but was actually a 70's novel in disguise.

From Anne
I finally worked up the guts a few months ago to tell Bob Crais, an acquaitance of mine, that I was in love with Elvis and thought he should ditch that Lucy broad. He told me I wasn't the first woman to suggest it.

From Jean
I don't read many P.I. books (my tastes range more to police procedurals) - but Grafton's books are on my do-not-miss list...

From Janelle Williams
Mike Hammer talked and said things that I wish I had the courage to say when someone acts rude toward me.

From Keith Logan:
James Lee Burke is a modern master, and Robicheaux is a great character who develops and changes as the series progresses. Easy Rawlins....well, odd to say since I'm an early-30s Montrealer, but I can really relate to this character! Yep, I like his attitudes, his reactions to his surroundings and the situations he finds himself in. And if you ever have a poll for best supporting character Mouse wins hands-down! McCone 'cause Muller allows her time to get older, change and adapt, and yet still retain a sharp, sharp edge to her. Burke because for a half-dozen books this guy was the spooky, gritty, tough yet realistic avenging angel with but one plan in mind; I admire this kind of dedication and single-mindedness! Nate Heller 'cause I still read the damn books, even if I (as a rule) dislike historicals and don't share the Spillane fixation with Collins.

From Skip Jackson:
In the most recent books in the series, Amsterdam policemen Gripstra & De Gier (and the Commisaris) have retired and gone "private."

From Mari Soto
Of course if we could REALLY stretch it I'd put Patricia Cornwell's Scarpetta at number 1.

From Mario Taboada
I hesitate to include Joe Gores's "DKA file" novels in the P.I. category. However, this is one of the best crime series of the past twenty-five years. Loren Estleman's Amos Walker series should be included, but unfortunately there are only five choices.

From Dick Tartow
Easy Rawlins is great, but I thought the rules were P.I. active in the nineties. Isn't Easy post-WWII L.A.? (Yep. See my comments below-.ed). While Henri Castaing is (or was) a police inspector and not a P.I., in Freeling's last book about him A Dwarf Kingdom, he is retired, and therefore should qualify as a P.I. -- or am I stretching it? (I think so-.ed)

From Infogrffti
Who the hell is Pepe Carvahlo? Spenser rules!

From Pete Walker:
Who's Pepe Carvalho?!? The best, that's all. Don't give me Spenser, infograffiti! What can I say? "Walkies!!!". You wouln't catch Pepe with a pooch, that's for damn sure.

From Tom Lawton
Burke walks the walk and talks the talk, a hard man who takes no prisoners. Sharman's the best the Brits have at the moment, an egomaniac who doesn't give a s**t.

From Mark:
Estleman's Amos Walker, Block's Matt Scudder and Pronzini's Nameless are the most obvious ones to me. After that it gets muddled a bit.

From Mari Hall:
Sorry, I'll probably wish I had listed others, as Nate Heller (Max Allan Collins) is probably my all-time fave (because I like the history aspect also) but he's sure not a '90's guy. And then there's a lot of characters I like who don't fit the "private eye" mould because they don't have a license, but are true "investigators" rather than just LOL stumbles on body, nosy, end of story.

From Reed Andrus
I would also include Wyatt Storme as #6.


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