Randy's Reviews > Murder is My Business

Murder is My Business by Brett Halliday
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Jul 29, 10

Read from July 28 to 29, 2010

It's 1944 and Mike Shayne has a little old lady show up at his office in New Orleans wanting his help with her son. She shows him a letter saying he'd enlisted in the army under the name James Brown because he was to help with a spy ring operating out of El Paso. She then hands him a newspaper clipping showing a Private James Brown was killed in a traffic accident the day after the letter was mailed.

What interested Shayne was the name of the car driver that had hit him: Jeff Towne, a man running for mayor of El Paso, a man who'd been a client of Shayne ten years before when he wanted the PI to dig up some dirt on his daughter's boy friend. When none was found, Towne had wanted Shayne to manufacture some, at which point he'd bailed, having his own sort of rough honesty.

When he gets to El Paso, almost everyone warns him off, including Towne, even after Shayne pushes for an autopsy that shows the soldier was already dead before the car hit him. Even then, Towne wanted him to leave it alone.

Throw in a thirty year old daughter still pining for that lost love, the lost love with Nazi connections in the interim, two silver mines, a newspaper reporter that doesn't Like Shayne, plot twists that keep coming, it makes for a quick, satisfying read.
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