Monday, October 29, 2012

Swann is Back! Check out Charles Salzberg's Latest!

Charles Salzberg
Charles Salzberg (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Shamus Award Nomination 
for Best First PI Novel

The Shamus Award is awarded by the 
Private Eye Writers of America (PWA) 
for the best detective fiction genre novels
and short stories of the year. The prize is
given annually to recognize outstanding
achievement in private eye fiction.

For more about Swann's Last Song
go to!__swanns-desk

Swann Dives In

By Charles Salzberg

Would you believe Henry Swann (meet Swann if you want to!) became a cable guy after finishin his last case, in Swann's Last Song?! No Way! I just couldn't see him climbing those stairs to install cable...He said it was the stairs that were beginning to bother him, but later admitted that he began to feel alive again when he began working his latest case... Let's face it, some guys were created to do what they best do, but I guess we'll have to wait to find out in each book...

If you clicked over and read my thoughts on Swann's Last Song, you will discovered that I favored the author's first ending over the published one... Wouldn't you know it, this ending surprised me too! But I'm thinking it was what the author wrote, so I'll have to ask him sometime. because while it surprised me, it worked. One thing we do know by this second novel is that Salzberg will not give us what we expect when a case is closing!

Charles Salzberg is just not going to trap himself into a fixed series format. I can tell that already! Now I love series, but Salzberg will take you to places where you didn't know you wanted to go and that can be cool too!

This time, readers will be taken behind the scenes in the book world...The rare books world of buying and selling...and possible criminal side of it...

Through an old connection, Swann is hooked up with a leading NY lawyer. Immediately, Swann hates the guy, but he's being offered $10 thou for a week's work...and, after all, it's all about getting the money when you work, right? BTW, the lawyer doesn't like Swann either, so they push their way through the arrangements because Swann knows he's taking the case... A Skip Tracer finds people, and Swann is good at it...

And the lawyer's daughter was missing, perhaps hooked up with a boyfriend who had also taken off...Sean Loomis was involved with Marcia Phillips, Carlton's daughter. So Swann figured it was best to start a search for Sean first...starting at Syracuse University:

Sean had worked in the library and majored in English Literature. Everybody praised his knowledge and devotion to the book world, but there was also one incident, after which he had left, insulted that they had suspected him. A rare book had disappeared...but was later found in another library building in regular stacks. The University had not pursued anything legally since the book movement could have been just a prank and nothing was gone.

Talking with students brought up the name of one of his professors, but she wasn't on campus at that time.

After talking with the librarian and an unlikely-looking chair of the English Department, he next traveled to Boston to talk with Dana Simmons, a professor in the department and then on to London. It seemed more and more likely that some type of scam might be happening, so Swann took some time to learn about the book business, which was quite interesting since most readers hate to destroy books and keep them, no matter how old. Finding old books that might be valuable was a business in itself and so readers learn along with Swann not only which books may have some value, but also how some type of forgery might take place...

Pretty straight forward trace activity so far, but then the twists start!

Salzberg has been a professional writer for years...but he has added a little flavor of Mike Hammer and Spenser, my favorite detectives from the past with Swann's own brand of humor...and now with the addition of Swann's voice of the trailers, we can start swooning over his wonderful voice...and can check out more about him on his site!

I loved the increase in pace as the clues began to point directly to who was doing what. The ending was somewhat surprising, but dare I say there was a moral to the story...a lesson to be learned...or perhaps, just a great, satisfying ending! This author adds some great imagery to his books, so be sure to check out his site! And kudos for the beautiful hardback cover directly on the book binding, as well as the paper cover! That probably makes it a future collectible rare book! LOL Enjoy Swann at what he does best and share about his story, so he doesn't have to go out and fix televisions anymore! Highly recommended!


Charles Salzberg is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in Esquire, New York Magazine, GQ, Elle, Redbook, Ladies Home Journal, Good Housekeeping, The New York Times Arts and Leisure, The New York Times Book Review, the Los Angeles Times Book Review,  the Cleveland Plain Dealer, and various other publications.

He is the author of From Set Shot to Slam Dunk, An Oral History of the NBA, and On A Clear Day They Could See Seventh Place:, Baseball’s 10 Worst Teams of the Century, and co-author of My Zany Life and Times, by Soupy Sales, Catch Them Being Good, by Tony DiCicco and Colleen Hacker, Phd., and The Mad Fisherman, by Charlie Moore.

His novel, Swann’s Last Song, was nominated for a Shamus Award for Best First PI Novel.  The sequel, Swann Dives In, was published in October, 2012.  He also has a Swann short story in Long Island Noir (Akashic Books.)  His novel, Devil in the Hole, will be published in July, 2013.

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  1. I remember reading Swann's Last Song, and given how bad my memory is, that's got to be a good recommendation. Glad to see he's back.

  2. Sheila, you're like me with memory...I have to at least read my review to refresh my memory! LOL