Seduction of the Innocent / Max Allan Collins
March 18, 2013 § Leave a comment
Max Allan Collins has become the go to guy for Hard Case Crime. He’s almost a house writer, what with his current eight titles under the venerable HCC ribbon. And come January 2014 he’ll release his 5th Quarry novel with HCC. Collins, ever the pulp professional, has churned out dozens of books over the past five decades and in Seduction of the Innocent he’s delivered another quality novel.
Seduction was planned as the third Jack and Maggie Starr mystery but when the previous two books’ publisher pulled the plug on the series HCC stepped up and gave Collins a proper venue for this 1950s comic-book fueled crime tale. Although I was never enamored with comics as a kid–or adult–the industry is perfect pulp fodder for Collins and HCC.
When a notable psychiatrist and vehement critic of the comic-books industry finds himself at the wrong end of a rope life begins to imitate art. And what beautiful art it is. Those lurid comic-book panels and covers come into full play, with their death and violence, lust and “headlights” (read the book). While the death of a pop-psych doctor sees no one shedding tears, a murder may not be the best move for the comic book/strip business. Enter Jack and Maggie Starr to help justice along.
Seduction is not the best book you’ll read this year. But it’s definitely worth reading. And owning. HCC just does books right.