That’s the name of American crime writer Mickey Spillane’s latest novel reviewed in this Sunday’s LA Times. It features Mike Hammer, his hard-boiled gumshoe whose every case turns into a personal vendetta that–following a suitable number of trysts with beautiful and generally willing babes and raw scenes of brutality–inevitably ends with Hammer serving up his own kind of justice, usually out of the smoking barrel of a .45.
Is this the year for dead authors from my childhood with new books out or what? (See The Faraway Tree post featuring British author, Enid Blyton, who died in ’68.) Mickey died in 2006 after writing enough books to fill the ocean, 225 million sold internationally, alone. I bring this up because, after outgrowing Ms. Blyton’s books of magic, fairies and backyard adventures, I hit the hard stuff. Ayn Rand “found congenial the black-and-white morality of the Hammer stories.” It was the Americanness of the stories I loved most: the slang, the setting usually New Jersey or New York’s seedy side, his quintessential American tough guy character. It fueled my passion for everything American.
I won’t be picking up Mickey’s latest book though; I left him behind when I moved to the States.