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Pelham Fell Here

(P.I. Frank Johnson Mysteries #1)

3.70  ·  Rating details ·  33 ratings  ·  16 reviews
PELHAM FELL HERE offers readers Frank Johnson's rich back story, an unusual departure from most of today's private eye series. We learn how the ex-military cop and part-time gunsmith Frank, now back living in his hometown of Pelham, Virginia, gets into the private investigator racket. He discovers somebody has killed his cousin Cody Chapman with a twelve-gauge shotgun ...more
Kindle Edition, 244 pages
Published April 4th 2013 by ECL Press (first published 2008)
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Average rating 3.70  · 
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Mar 16, 2010 rated it really liked it
Years ago, a friend and I took trip to visit friends who lived on Mobile Bay in Alabama. The guy ran shrimp boats out of the Gulf for a living. This was my first trip to that part of the world and I had a sense that we had stumbled into a foreign country. This sense only deepened when one night at a party at our friends' house, a young guy who worked on one of the shrimp boats told me about a run-in he'd had with another man and how, if he weren't a practicing Catholic, he would have slit the ...more
Feb 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
How do you write a review for a novel so unique in style and prose.

I started to read this book ,it was hard ,not used to the Americanisims . But by the time I was about thirty pages in I was starting to understand the main characters, what a super story i was immersed with the main man . Thank you for Introducing him to me .Many thanks.

I recommend this novel and I have no hesitation to award 5 stars
ღ Carol jinx~☆~☔
Nov 14, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I don't know why I read this Frank Johnson P.I. out of sequence but it doesn't matter. I read The Blue Cheer first and loved the writing and the story and the same goes for this one. The characters were so real that I think I may have seen one of those neo-Nazi's at 7-11. This was a very well-developed story about a small group of neo-Nazi's and their big dream to overtake Washington D.C. and who knows where it would end. Small town sheriffs and their Deputies turn out to be pretty scary too. Ed ...more
Feb 12, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I love fast-paced books with the main character as a good guy who gets himself into trouble, looks at life with a little humor, but takes no garbage from anyone, including neo-Nazis and bad cops (who might also be neo-Nazis). The good guy wins, with a little help from well-meaning friends, but you know he will eventually find himself in trouble again, and you want to find out what he's going to be up to in the future. And it doesn't hurt if he has a pet ferret to show his soft side. This book ...more
Apr 28, 2010 rated it really liked it
Who couldn’t be bowled over by a protagonist who takes a contract out on his ex-wife and then befriends a ferret whom he names Mr. Bojangles? Frank Johnson (main protagonist of the series and more sinned against than sinning) manages to become the target of some very nasty neo-Nazis. Truly awful characters! Let the chase begin.
Oct 28, 2008 marked it as to-read
This is my friend Ed Lynskey's book...let us take a peek into his good mind...
Jun 25, 2009 added it
Bonus points for the shout out to Paul Drake.
Dec 01, 2008 rated it it was amazing
enjoyable with a quick-witted plot....I like Frank Johnson's pet
ferret named Mr. Bojangles
Aug 05, 2013 rated it liked it
I need an extra half star. Can I call this redneck noir? Pretty cool.
Aug 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
Wow! Frank Johnson goes on the run suspected of being a cop killer. He enlists the help of his friend Chet to try to find out who killed Frank’s cousin. They encounter a crazy bunch of deadly neo nazis among others. A thriller from start to finish.
Toni Osborne
Nov 13, 2012 rated it liked it
Book 1, in P.I Frank Johnson mystery series

Although this book was written after “The Dirt-Brown Derby” and “The Blue Cheer” it is actually the first in the series. I normally prefer starting with #1 in a series however when researching this author I found different opinions on where to start, very confusing. I solved the problem by contacting the author who graciously suggested I start with “Pelham Fell Here”, the real prequel to the other two books.

The story is actually an introduction to the
Apr 05, 2013 rated it did not like it
Ehhhh.... If you like books that over indulge in adjectives, this book is for you. To tell you the truth, it just irritated the crap out of me. The story is predictable and child like simple. I kept expecting a twist or turn at the end of the book, something to rescue it from it's drab tired script, but it never came. Pelham Fell Here was released by the Mundani Press, which ironically is appropriately for this book. Mundane......
Penny Ramirez
I gave it 48 pages. I wanted to like this book - in fact, the mystery was setting up nicely - but the stilted language and bad grammar kept pulling me out of the story.

Another annoyance - not the author's fault - is that the description here on Goodreads says this is book 1 - but its really book 3. Sigh. Guess I should have done more homework BEFORE I went to the trouble to interlibrary loan it from Arkansas!!!!
Mar 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
Gunsmith turned amateur private eye Frank Johnson is saddened and angered at the murder of his cousin Cody. As he is at the top of the local Sheriff's list of suspects he is doubly determined to find the guilty party. As he makes his way around the Virginia countryside and through castles, Neo-Nazi covens, etc. he adds a couple of part time bounty hunters as reinforcements. Good yarn.

Ed is one of my Goodreads friends. If you haven't tried him I recommend that you do.
Barbara Brien
Nov 19, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
While I was reading this book, I was going to give it a nice, solid 3 stars, but the finish wraps it up so nicely (for me) that I ratcheted it up to a 4.

In the beginning - well, even half way through - I did not really like the main character. But he grew, and while he stayed the same character, he learned to go beyond the restrictions and handicaps placed upon him by circumstance.

The writing style is deceptively simple, bordering on rough eloquence.
Dee Renee  Chesnut
Nov 28, 2009 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Dee Renee by: Ed Lynsky
Shelves: 2010
I wanted to like this book more for I am interested in this genre of rural noir and for its introduction to ex-MP and part-time gunsmith Frank Johnson and his pet ferret Mr. Bojangles.
A reason I did not like it more was sentences like, "The door, our objective twenty paces away, laughed at us." My fictive dream was broken repeatedly, and I was confounded by eyes that clashed, crescendos that died down, and many other examples of descriptions that did not work for this reader.
Rick F.
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Contact Ed at to receive his books newsletter for reader discounts and updates. He writes three well-received cozy mystery series.

Other books in the series

P.I. Frank Johnson Mysteries (6 books)
  • The Dirt-Brown Derby (P.I. Frank Johnson #2)
  • The Blue Cheer (P.I. Frank Johnson #3)
  • Troglodytes (P.I. Frank Johnson #4)
  • The Zinc Zoo (P.I. Frank Johnson #5)
  • After the Big Noise (P.I. Frank Johnson #6)
“From Chapter 1:

The main rub was the lack of RnR and I burned out. Three years and three stripes later, I ejected from the MP Corps, vowing I'd never do police or criminal investigative work again. Instead, I returned home when I should've learned better.”
“From Chapter 1:

"You’re not a local.” I paused, unsure. “Or are you?”

“Sort of. Randall Van Dotson is my dad. I’m Rennie.”

After tossing her head that coy, sweet way girls do, she gave me a candid appraisal.”
More quotes…