Tuesday, February 18, 2014

He Done Her Wrong - Stuart M. Kaminsky

I had the remaining Kaminsky books in some sort of order two weeks ago. But it fell apart when the box they were in went upside-down into the ditch along with me and my car. Stupid ice. Anyway, He Done Her Wrong was actually the book set just before The Fala Factor. So we can at least see how Toby reached the dire financial straits he was in, though the thing with the IRS that crops up here was not resolved by the end of the next book (basically, the IRS doesn't believe Toby makes so little money given the high class of clientele he sporadically has).

This time a disgruntled and apparently unstable failed actor has set his sights on certain figures he blames for his fate, including Mae West. Which wouldn't be an issue, except that he escaped from the hospital where he was being kept. Toby's brother knows Mae from before his marriage, so he actually asks Toby to handle it discreetly. Well, I'm not sure about discreet, but it does get handled. Eventually.

It's another perfectly fine story. There's a nice bit where Toby comes up to the hospital for more info on the man he's chasing, and it's pointed out just how strange Toby's life is when you lay it all out. It had that nice creeping horror, at least for me, where you can see exactly where it's going, and it's not good. But after The Fala Factor, I had been looking forward to seeing if there was going to be a real shift in Phil's attitude towards his brother. Instead, we're still at the stage where Phil treats him like a screw-up, when he isn't punching Toby for saying things Phil considers impertinent (a category which includes any show of concern or affection, up to and including asking how the wife and kids are). Unfortunately, there's a reference in the book to Toby's working for Gary Cooper, which I'm guessing is High Midnight, which I haven't gotten to yet.

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