The Juarez Knife: Manville Moon, Detective #1 by Richard Deming
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
The first entry in the largely forgotten Manville Moon series of private eye stories, this one a novella from the January 1948 issue of Popular Detective pulp magazine. Moon finds himself engaged in a well plotted locked room type of mystery with a first-rate cast of characters and a few surprising twists. Moon is from the hard-boiled school of detectives, although he's not particularly violent, and he's clearly more compassionate than others from this era. I liked that it's long enough to tell an elaborate story in an hour or two of reading without getting bogged down in details or bloat. Excellent pulp fiction and recommended to fans of post-war private eye stories.
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Here's the cover of the January 1948 issue of Popular Detective: