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Page history last edited by Randal Brandt 1 year, 12 months ago

Upton, Robert.

Who'd Want to Kill Old George? G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1977.

| setting: San Francisco | series character: Amos McGuffin | Hubin | find it |

Summary: San Francisco private investigator Amos McGuffin is hired by eccentric, wealthy, New Age convert George Curtis to prove that his estranged wife Lydia is having an affair. Although McGuffin doesn't usually do divorce work, this case seems like easy money -- and lots of it. When he goes to deliver his information to Curtis at his Sausalito home, he finds that his client has been murdered. The police think that Curtis surprised a burglar; McGuffin doesn't buy that story and sets out to find the killer. Soon McGuffin is having an affair of his own with Lydia and is chasing leads from Big Sur to Mendocino trying to find out why anyone would want to kill old George.

Dead on the Stick. Viking, 1986.

| setting: San Francisco; Caribbean | series character: Amos McGuffin | find it |

Summary: San Francisco private eye Amos McGuffin drinks too much -- unless he's on a case. McGuffin sobers up when attorney Francis Knight hires him to investigate the suspicious death of the president of the Palm Isles Golf Club, an exclusive golf resort located on a remote island in the Caribbean. McGuffin, who learned to play the game as a caddie at San Francisco's Olympic Club, goes to the island undercover. The investigation uncovers a high stakes Skins game, adultery, drug smuggling, voodoo rituals, and murder by exotic wildlife... and McGuffin learns, the hard way, that golf is a blood sport.

The Fabergé Egg. E.P. Dutton, 1988.

| setting: San Francisco | series character: Amos McGuffin | Hubin | find it |

Summary: When the ex-wife and a young daughter of San Francisco PI Amos McGuffin disappear from their apartment and he finds a yellowed newspaper clipping left behind recounting the senseless killing of his partner years earlier by Otto Kruger, a crazed German World War II veteran, McGuffin begins to suspect foul play. Then, when he learns that Kruger, whom he put away eighteen years earlier, has been released from a hospital for the criminally insane, he realizes that Kruger has kidnapped them and left the clipping as a ransom note. As he frantically tries to reconstruct the investigation into his partner's death, McGuffin is led to an overweight homosexual ex-German officer who offers to help him locate his family in return for McGuffin's assistance in recovering one of the fabled FabergĂ© eggs. Soon two more searchers join the chase -- a beautiful actress named Shawney O'Sea and a KGB agent who wants to return the egg to its rightful home in the Kremlin. The chase leads McGuffin around the city and into the Napa Valley, culminating in a shootout in the public square in St. Helena. This novel is a pastiche of Dashiell Hammett's The Maltese Falcon. The characters and situations are direct descendants of Hammett's more famous creations. This time the "dingus" is a jeweled egg and several of the characters seem awfully familiar: the fat man, the beautiful woman who has a creative way with the truth, the nervous gunsel, and even a mysterious Russian named Kemidov.

 

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