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Skinflick (Dave Brandstetter, #5)
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Skinflick (Dave Brandstetter #5)

4.02  ·  Rating Details ·  233 Ratings  ·  24 Reviews
A new crime novel featuring insurance investigator, Dave Brandstetter, who finds too many loose ends to tie up when he investigates a murder. The investigation takes him from an evangelical church to the seedy world of teenage drugs and prostitution.
Paperback, 194 pages
Published October 1st 1980 by Holt Rinehart and Winston (first published 1979)
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James Thane
Apr 22, 2013 James Thane rated it really liked it
This is the fifth of Joseph Hansen's series featuring insurance investigator Dave Brandstetter, and it's among the best in the bunch. As the book opens, Dave is going through some significant changes in his life but, as with any good P.I., the job always comes first.

Dave's company has insured the life of Gerald Dawson, a man with deeply held religious convictions who was convinced that the world around him was going to hell in a hand basket. Dawson was determined to do what he could to at least
Mar 25, 2015 Sofia rated it it was amazing

Skinflick and me clicked immediately. I don’t really know what the cosmic influences were for that but I’m glad it happened.

From my getting into the first page, I felt I was home, in the kind of writing that I love. Spare, intelligent, no melodrama and I was a happy girl.

This not withstanding there were still moments when I called Hansen 'bastard' for making me worry so about Dave who always has to obey him (well he is the writer after all) and the others, including beautiful, sad, funny, pricel
Bill  Kerwin
Sep 29, 2016 Bill Kerwin rated it liked it
An enjoyable entry in the Brandstetter series. Dave's father has passed away, his relationship with Doug is virtually over, and he is now working for a new insurance company. The case: did the porn shop owner really murder the militant Christian activist that destroyed his shop? Dave thinks he did.

The plot is a little convoluted and arbitrary, but as usual Hansen gives us good LA atmosphere and some interesting characters. My favorite: a skinflick director with a sense of humor, doomed to fail
Rosa, really
Mar 25, 2015 Rosa, really rated it really liked it

Yeah, what she said.

Keee-rist, I'm lazy.

Thanks for the BR, Sofia! <3
Mar 24, 2015 Lena♥Ribka rated it really liked it

4,5 stars

The fifth book in the series. Like it.

Hansen's strong writing + great character's portraying + amazing Dave + good mystery + no romance a weak whiff of romance = Joseph Hansen.

Molli B.
4.5 stars. I think this is my favorite Brandstetter so far. I enjoyed the mystery a great deal, and though I can't really explain why, I found it the slightest bit more accessible than the first four.

Dave faces some pretty enormous life changes in this one, and unlike the other books, this one features just about zero activity on the relationship/romance front. (view spoiler) It
Tex Reader
5.0 of 5 stars – One of the Best Ones Yet In This Series.

I love gay mysteries and romances, and this has been one of the best series combining both, and in the process rightfully became for Joseph Hansen a classic in gay literature. This fifth in the series was one of the best so far and continued to build the story.

I liked this for the same reasons I liked each in the series. First off, for those interested, it worked well as a standalone, with its own self-contained mystery, while also further
Jan 04, 2014 Neet rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the fifth in the Brandstetter murder mysteries.In this book we find at a crossroads in his personal and professional life.Dave has loss his father who seem to be on the mend since the previous novel but succumbed to a heart attack.Also,Dave has ended his 3 year relationship with Doug Sawyer,amicably realizing that both went into their relationship for the wrong reason.Dave also finds himself trying to help his father's widow,Amanda thru her grief and depression by letting her redecorate ...more
Deanna Against Censorship
I thank Josh Lanyon for making me aware of Joseph Hansen's books. They are wonderful reads. Written over 30 years ago, his books still stand up as good mysteries. Looking back to an age of no cell or computers and a time when smoking and drinking were done almost automatically makes one realize how times have changed but people have not.

Dave Brandstetter is an insurance investigator who looks for the little things that do not set right in the obvious murder scenario. He justs keeps poking into
Oct 27, 2010 Nikki rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, crime, lgbt
I can't decide whether to love or hate the way that Dave's life goes on in the background of his cases. I love it, in that his sexuality and his family and his friends are all just a part of it, like he carries that everywhere he goes -- like real people do -- but I hate it, for the way that it means that those stories that I care about because I care about him are just background.

Anyway, I do love the Brandstetter books, but I don't think this one is my favourite. I suppose in some ways the set
Jun 26, 2013 Dumbledore11214 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: gay-mystery
These series is just amongst the best the subgenre can offer IMO. This is book five and I keep thinking surely there must be one title where the writing won't be as strong, where mystery would be easy to guess? So far no, not really. Dave Brandstetter is one of the most memorable and interesting detectives and that does not change in this book either. He is actually smart and while sometimes red herrings could sway him in the wrong direction, I have not wanted to yell at him and tell him "look ...more
Quick read but interesting read. The book written in 1979 gives a chilling description of the right religious extremists that were at that time not as powerful as now but had the same rhetoric. The book opens with Dave under the shock of his father's death. Most of the book's plot is underlined with Dave's confusion about his dad's and new start.

The culprits are a bit like cartoon images of what bad guys should be but still for Dave's journey it's quite worth it. 3 3/4 stars rounded up to 4.
Apr 17, 2012 Rebecca rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crime
I liked this one a tiny bit less than the first books in the series. It gives us relatively little opportunity to theorise about the murder for a whodunnit, and the end was a bit too dramatic and action-y for my taste. But overall, Hansen's writing style is still very strong, and with his lovely and evocative descriptions, the detailed scenes, the great characterisations, and the little tidbits we get about Dave's private live, I'm still willing to give five stars.
Nov 21, 2014 Kirsten rated it liked it
I think these are starting to become cozy mysteries to me. I pretty much always know what I'll get with them. I must say I was a little surprised at how blase this book treated underage child molestation though. I don't know if it was a product of the times or what, but that was pretty uncomfortable. I'd like to see more of Randy too. I liked him.
Angel Pedroza
Jul 03, 2015 Angel Pedroza rated it it was amazing
I remember reading this book when it was first published in the 70's as a young gay 20 something. This author and this series meant a great deal to me because it gave me a positive gay hero in popular culture. I am currently rereading these books and they have held up to popular tastes and sensibilities. This book is great.
Lil' Grogan
Feb 20, 2011 Lil' Grogan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humour, mystery, 4, lgbt
I'm not sure whether it's writing to fit Dave's mood/situation (freedom, lightness, imbalance) or it's just the writing - but this one is funnier, there's more dialogue, rhythm, sharpness. There seemed to be less reeling off of statements, and more intent? What bothered me about the writing style before this time served as an enjoyable punctuation of sound and movement.
Edina Rose
Feb 10, 2014 Edina Rose rated it liked it
Another mystery, nothing special, though. But on the personal side, I like Dave's relationship with his young (younger) stepmom. He cares abut her like... a little sister she cares about him like a bother. It's comforting. dave is so lonely since his dad died and he broke up with Doug!
J.R. Tomlin
Feb 13, 2011 J.R. Tomlin rated it it was amazing
My absolute favorite of the Brandstetter series, I think because it was before the plague years and it was all right to be light and a bit frivolous. More frivolity was a good thing, and some of this is just pure giggles.
Aug 16, 2011 Jes rated it really liked it
Because when you find a book from the 70's called "Skinflick" in the back of a marina restaurant on St. Thomas Island, you bring it home with you.
Vicky Loebel
Jun 19, 2016 Vicky Loebel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Still the best

The mystery's great. The secondary story of Dave's relationship with his young stepmother is one of my favorite continuing subplots on the series.
Feb 16, 2014 Drianne rated it really liked it
Shelves: gay, m-m, mystery
I liked the mystery here, but I was more interested in the character development. As always, the denouement moved too fast.

What's happened to Dave's friend Madge?
John Cooke
Jun 23, 2015 John Cooke rated it really liked it
Loved it. I enjoy Joseph Hansen's novels much more now that I'm older. SKINFLICK was a solid entry in the Dave Brandstetter mysteries. And the 1970s setting is now retro and fun.
Josh rated it it was amazing
Aug 12, 2009
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Sep 17, 2014
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Jul 30, 2007
A.M. Riley
A.M. Riley rated it really liked it
Jul 30, 2008
Lin rated it liked it
Mar 04, 2013
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Joseph Hansen (1923–2004) was an American author of mysteries. The son of a South Dakota shoemaker, he moved to a California citrus farm with his family in 1936. He began publishing poetry in the New Yorker in the 1950s, and joined the editorial teams of gay magazines ONE and Tangents in the 1960s. Using the pseudonyms Rose Brock and James Colton, Hansen published five novels and a collection of ...more
More about Joseph Hansen...

Other Books in the Series

Dave Brandstetter (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Fadeout (Dave Brandstetter, #1)
  • Death Claims (Dave Brandstetter, #2)
  • Troublemaker (Dave Brandstetter, #3)
  • The Man Everybody Was Afraid Of (Dave Brandstetter, #4)
  • Gravedigger (Dave Brandstetter, #6)
  • Nightwork (Dave Brandstetter, #7)
  • The Little Dog Laughed (Dave Brandstetter, #8)
  • Early Graves (Dave Brandstetter, #9)
  • Obedience (Dave Brandstetter, #10)
  • The Boy Who Was Buried this Morning (Dave Brandstetter, #11)

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“Los Angeles didn't get like this often. He hated it when it did. And this time it was holding on. It had been brutal at the cemetery three weeks ago. His father's nine widows had looked ready to drop. The savage light had leached the color from the flowers. The savage heat had got at the mound of earth from the grave even under its staring green blanket of fake grass. He'd stayed to watch the workmen fill the grave. The earth was dry. Even the sharp walls of the grave were dry. What the hell was he doing remembering that?” 2 likes
“When people run out of probable things to do, they do improbable things.” 1 likes
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