Tuesday, November 1, 2011

#45: Baby Moll by John Farris

The strong arm of an aging crime boss gets out of the racket when he meets an innocent and beautiful girl (naturally), but gets pulled back in (naturally), when a vengeful killer stalks the gang in Baby Moll by John Farris.

Baby Moll is a tough-minded entry in the very readable Hard Case Crime collection, an admirable paperback series of lost noirs and contemporary stories in a similar vein.

This one was written by John Farris, who had a lengthy career writing in a variety of pulp traditions.  What was unbelievable to find out, after a little googling, was that this novel was written basically straight out of high school.  It is hard to fathom Farris had the sophistication to write some of the sequences in the story, despite however many Mickey Spillane novels he might have read beforehand.

I got this, with no small amount of surprise, from a Dollar General spinner rack of paperbacks. 

A very sturdy entry in the series and worth a look for fans of organized crime novels in general and Hard Case Crime in particular.

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