Bye Bye, Baby (Nathan Heller, #15)
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Bye Bye, Baby (Nathan Heller #15)

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3.94 of 5 stars 3.94  ·  rating details  ·  208 ratings  ·  51 reviews
It’s 1962, and Twentieth Century Fox is threatening to fire Marilyn Monroe. The blond goddess hires Nate Heller, private eye to the stars, to tap her phone so she will have a record of their calls in case they take her to court. When Heller starts listening, he uncovers far more than nasty conversations. The CIA, the FBI, the Mafia—even the Russians—are involved in actions...more
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published August 16th 2011 by Forge Books
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Kemper
Marilyn Monroe has affairs with both JFK and RFK! The FBI and the Mafia are secretly recording everything! She dies under mysterious circumstances and powerful people cover it up! Then she runs off with Elvis after he faked his death to live with the aliens hidden in Area 51!

OK, so maybe that last one is pushing it.

Nathan Heller, a private detective who is more of a figurehead for his successful national agency than investigator, is asked by his old friend Marilyn Monroe to set up wiretaps on he...more
Ed
Aug 22, 2011 Ed rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: hardboiled private eye fans, historical mystery fans
Recommended to Ed by: I picked it off the new books listing at library
4.5 stars. As a rule, I shy away from any novels using famous personalities as their main players, but not for this first-rate historical private eye tale. P.I. Nate Heller, older and wiser but still tough-nosed and hardboiled, befriends Norma Jeane. At her request, he taps her phone and then her in bed. What dude wouldn't like doing that? Anyway. Our intrepid sleuth Nate is hired by a rich Hollywood journalist after Marilyn's death to check into the sketchy circumstances surrounding it. He talk...more
Randy
The first Nathan Heller novel in nine years. Comes out in August.

Max Allan Collins does his usual masterful job of weaving his fictional private eye into the real life story of the death of Marilyn Monroe. In his fifties now, Heller works more as a manger in general of the three branches of his A-1 Detective Agency.

Out in Los Angeles, he goes to work for Marilyn Monroe, a young woman he's known for years. She wants him to bug her own phones in her battles with Fox Studios, who are doing a hatche...more
Erin Tanner
Much has been written about Marilyn Monroe and the mysterious circumstances surrounding her death. Bye Bye Baby is one of those great novels that explores what really happened and ultimately places responsibility for her death with the mob and the Kennedys. It was refreshing to see Marilyn as a woman set on making changes in her life and taking back her independence. Unfortunately, Marilyn never got the chance to live the new life she was planning. Mr. Collins has done a fabolous job of research...more
John
I'm a big fan of the Nathan Heller mystery series. As far as historical mysteries go this series is one of the best. Max Allan Collins gives more than a tip of his hat to the hard boiled slant of Spillane. Heller's cut whole cloth from Spillane's hard-boiled world outlook then gets dropped into some of the most beguiling mysteries of our times. I like the weave of historical fact, real life characters and the uncovering of murky questions surrounding the facts.

Bye Bye, Baby takes on the death of...more
Jeff Tucker
This book is historical fiction with some of the main characters in the book being Marilyn Monroe, Peter Lawford, Bobby Kennedy and Frank Sinatra. Other characters are fictionalized versions of real people or composites of several actual people. The main character is a private detective who is completely fictional. The author explains all the characters and events at the end of the book. I’ve only read a couple of other books where an author writes fictional versions of actual events and fiction...more
Susie
This was a really good book. It takes place and is about Marilyn Monroe's death and the suspicious events that happened in the days before and after. It is listed as fiction, however, it sounds so true that it had me googling MM's death facts. The author uses many resources and tells the story as a private investigator and friend that Marilyn has hired. This book has everything: old Hollywood stories, the Kennedys, politics and Mafia.
Gerald Kinro
This is a different take on the death of Marilyn Monroe. Nate Heller, private eye to the Hollywood elite is hired by Marilyn to tap her phone lines as ammunition in the event of legal action by her film company, Twentieth Century Fox. He uncovers some interesting deeds focused on his famous client—The CIA, FBI, the Mob, and the Kennedys. Then she is found dead. The official cause is an overdose, but Heller suspects murder. So he pushes on then things get interesting as he interacts with players...more
Chuck
Technically I guess you would have to classify this story as historical fiction as it deals with the death of Marilyn Monroe. If you can get over the fact that the protagonist, private eye Nate Heller, personally knows all the players and some unlikely scenarios it makes for a pretty good, day at the beach, read. When I say he knows all the players I'm talking about Marilyn Monroe, John F. Kennedy, Bobby Kennedy, Frank Sinatra, Peter Lawford, Hugh Hefner, Sam Giancana, et.al. How did Marilyn die...more
Melissa
I see a Marilyn Monroe reading frenzy in my future after reading this interesting fictional take on her death. Even though this book is #15 , I had not read any of the previous books and felt like this was a pretty good stand alone for a series book.

"It’s 1962, and Twentieth Century Fox is threatening to fire Marilyn Monroe. The blond goddess hires Nate Heller, private eye to the stars, to tap her phone so she will have a record of their calls in case they take her to court. When Heller starts l...more
Galadriel Johnson
This is my first adventure with Nate Heller, Max Allan Collins’ famous private eye. I was hesitant to come into a series at the 15th novel, but since I won a copy from Macmillan’s Criminal Element, I decided to give it a whirl. Considering that Marilyn Monroe is featured as a main character my arm did not have to be twisted. Reading a novel that is fiction based on fact always makes me more careful than fully fictionalized works. I always make an effort to remember that what I am reading may co...more
Kristen
This was the book that got me hooked on Collins in the first place. In many ways, after reading other novels of his before this, it also seems to be his most disjointed. I was highly intrigued when he started discussing the Marilyn Monroe case as Nathan Heller has always had Hollywood friends throughout his novels. This one though doesn't seem to know where the mystery is. Part One sets up the fact that numerous people are spying on Marilyn and that she knows too much and Part Two is devoted to...more
Suzanne Moore
Nathan Heller, a friend of Marilyn Monroe, is hired by the actress to investigate possible betrayals. Nate works as a private investigator and when Marilyn fears her house has been bugged she solicits him as a professional as well as a friend. She confides in him about her love affairs with the Kennedys … yes both Bobby and Jack. When she realizes that neither of them feels as strongly about her as she does them, depression sets in. She lets her mood affect her work and the studios don't take he...more
Maurice J
I have to stipulate that I love all of the Nathan Heller mysteries.

Heller is a fictional character who is a part of important stories of much of the 20th century. Collins deeply researches all of the events in which he places Heller. Reading all of these is great fun because Heller always is a delight to read as he interacts with a variety of famous people.

This book is about Marilyn Monroe and the end of her life. Collins makes some heavy, but well-researched, assertions about the relations of J...more
David Williams
Bye Bye Baby is another great novel in the Nathan Heller series by Max Allan Collins. When we first met Nathan Heller in True Detective it was the early 1930s. Through the years he has worked a lot of famous cases. Now he is on the scene with the lovely, vivacious Marilyn Monroe. Marilyn is an old friend and calls Nathan to help her with a little job. She wants her phone bugged. She is having a lot of trouble with her studio, Fox, and she wants to protect herself. Heller’s favor for a friend tur...more
Brett Wallach
I usually enjoy Collins's merging of fact and fiction, and this is one of his best. While it's a wild leap of faith for Nate Heller to have intimate relationships with so many key figures in early 1960's, it's still a fun leap, well written as always, and after what seemed to be a cop out earlier on, Collins takes a real stand on how Marilyn Monroe died, and who was involved. We don't know if he's right of course, but it's as plausible as anything else I've heard on the subject.
Mom
Good story of Nate Heller as private eye for Marilyn Monroe. Fact and fiction give the impression the reader is learning something as elaborate plots are fabricated to explain the circumstances of MM's death. Listened to this in audio and MM's little bitty voice made her seem really lightweight, and gave the impression the men would credit her every word and action as brilliant and talented. Still, a compelling story.
Roxane
This was a GoodReads Give-Away book - thank-you GoodReads!!!

Wow - an amazing book...a fictional account of Marilyn Monroe's last days - before and after her death. Explores her relationship with Frank Sinatra, Peter Lawford, the Kennedy Brothers (JFK & Bobbie), and various mafia type people...fascinating!

Nathan Heller – PI to the ‘Stars' and Marilyn’s friend, tells the story. He senses that suicide is not necessarily the truth and sets out to determine what caused Marilyn’s death. Bye Bye,...more
Chris
So many twists and turns that it is hard to follow at times. Another Nathan Heller historical fiction book. I never knew much about the Marilyn death. Now I know more than I wanted to. A disturbing story.
Michael A
lots of facts and data on Marilyn Monroe, the Kennedys and the twists of her death worked into a very comfortable story that reads well and holds your interest.
Jeremiah Murphy
After I read this book I felt like I lived in Hollywood during the late 50s/early 60s. I really liked how it blended history, crime fiction, mystery, celebrity gossip, and conspiracy theory. I've since read a couple other in the Nate Heller series and while all are entertaining, this one seems to be the best. All the detail is quite engaging.

My only gripe with these stories is that Nate sleeps with everyone except JFK (and even then who knows). Also, the endings of these books also tend to leave...more
Denise Dougherty
Another interesting story that leaves you wondering about one of the most famous deaths of the 20th century - Marilyn Monroe. Nate Heller is never boring.

DD@Phila
Zach
If you liked this, I HIGHLY recommend American Tabloid by James Ellroy.

Classic Maz Allan Collins and Nate Heller!

Like the best of the series, well researched and provides an interesting, welll thought out alternate theory to a real life mystery

Collins smoothly has Heller interact with real figures from Peter Lawford and Maryling Monroe to legendary figures of the LAPD.

The character of Heller remains intersting and hard boiled. He tries to do the right thing/be a gentleman but also is perfectly...more
Art
I read the JFK trilogy out of sequence. It would have been betetr to read this one first. But I still enjoy the Nate Heller series and am looking forward to moving on to the middle of this series.
Freda mans
Most people who know of Marilyn Monroe wonder what really happened surrounding her death. It is true she had some connections in life that were questionable, and this story touches down on some of the most sensitive ideas of death.
I loved how noir-esque this book is. The era, the characters, the plot, all pulled me in and kept me reading until the end. Which I have to admit surprised me. It wasn't at all what I expected, but I was too wrapped up in all the conspiracy theories.
This book was very...more
Clay
From the author of "Road to Perdition" comes"Bye Bye Baby". Everyone loved Marilyn Monroe, but did she really die from a drug overdose? Or was it a big government conspiracy and cover up? This is one fictional, although fact-based, look into the life and death of the Blonde Bombshell. A must read if you love mysteries, true crime, or Marilyn Monroe.

Although the book IS a fictionalized account of events, the author did try to use some reading materials and accounts from the real life of Marily...more
Neilie J
I love Marilyn Monroe so I was interested in this fictionalized account of her murder (yep, I'm a conspiracy theorist) but Collins let me down. Earlier Nathan Heller books show the hero to be morally ambiguous, but never has he been this crude and sexist. Collins gives us Heller at his most unlikeable, supposedly defending the world's most famous sex symbol while using her like so many other men did. Collins has a weakness for setting up ridiculously unlikely liaisons between his "private dick"...more
Crystal-Rain Love
Loved it. Nathan Heller is a fictional detective implanted into the very real world of Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra, and the Kennedys. I have always believed that the Kennedys were involved in Monroe's death so this book intrigued me. Collins mixes in a lot of fact with fiction, and describes a very plausible explanation for why Marilyn ended up dead far too soon.
There were many twists and turns, especially right at the end. I enjoy books that keep you guessing and this one certainly did.
I re...more
Shawn Manning
First, I won this one via GoodReads. Second, boy am I glad I did. I wasn't aware that Collins was still writing this series, but it hasn't lost any of it's appeal. He does a nice job of not sensationalizing the death of Marilyn Monroe. He does manage to paint a picture of her that I've not seen mentioned before, but was totally engaged with. I'm very interested in reading the next one in the series and will have to scout out the ones that I have missed. My only complaint is the cheesy cover. It...more
Thomas D Sinex
Reliably entertaining series
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12014
Received the Shamus Award, "The Eye" (Lifetime achievment award) in 2006.

He has also published under the name Patrick Culhane. He and his wife, Barbara Collins, have written several books together. Some of them are published under the name Barbara Allan.

Book Awards
Shamus Awards Best Novel winner (1984) : True Detective
Shamus Awards Best Novel winner (1992) : Stolen Away
Shamus Awards Best Novel nom...more
More about Max Allan Collins...
Supreme Justice Bones Buried Deep (Bones, #1) Road to Perdition Sin City (CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, #2) Cold Burn (CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, #3)

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