Family Values

Gumshoes, with Children

I just can't imagine Marlowe pushing a pram, or Warshawski running out to Rite-Aid to pick up some Pampers, but some P.I.s have made the big leap...

  • Ms. Tree by Max Allan Collins & Terry Beatty

How tough is Ms. Tree as a mom? How about a gun battle while nursing? Imagine Mike Hammer with ovaries.

Recently widowed, a waitress with two young kids to raise talks her way into a part-time gig assisting a perenially cranky and slightly dodgy P.I., plasyed by Stuart Margolin, in this delightful family-oriented sitcom from the CBC.

The books featuring this family man and detective are marked by author’s quirky, distinctive voice, but the P.I. stuff is never skimped on.

The most realistic of the Mom P.I.s, Lippmann manages the neat trick of making us care about Tess' family stuff almost as much as her detective stuff, even slipping in a Rear Window type case when Tess is confined to her bed during her pregnancy.

It took her a while, but in her fourth novel, the author finally made this new mom and amateur sleuth an officially licensed private eye, mostly she can stay at home with her precious baby daughter. Huh?


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