The Private Practice of Michael Shayne by Brett Halliday


The Private Practice of Michael Shayne, Brett Halliday, 1940

My favorite quote: “The moon had not yet risen, and stars studded the dark velvety blue of the tropical sky, casting an illusively perceptible sheen through the still night.”

Notable characters: Mike Shayne, the PI; Larry Kincaid, his friend; Harry Grange, the crooked lawyer; Phyllis Brighton, the love interest

Most memorable scene: When Mike Shayne is arrested for murder (dun, dun, DUN!)

Greatest strengths: It’s ability to make me completely overlook the fact that I’m reading outdated, low-grade, cheesy pulp fiction ranks up there pretty high

Standout achievements: The grim seediness of this one does great justice to the hardboiled genre

Fun Facts: This is the second novel in a series that went on to produce seventy-seven books in total, not all of them written by the same author

Other media: The 1940 film, Michael Shayne, Private Detective, starring Lloyd Nolan

What it taught me: What a dewlap is. I never want one. 

How it inspired me: While many of the characters in this series — but Michael Shayne, especially — walk the gray line of right and wrong, they all believe that they’re doing what’s right. When the bad guys think they’re the heroes of the story, it adds a layer of realness to the plot that can make even the most outlandish storyline more believable. I keep this in mind in my own writing with the hope of avoiding one-dimensional villains 

Additional thoughts: While I do enjoy this series, I can’t help but hold out some hope that as it progresses, Private Investigator Mike Shayne will develop into someone a bit more lifelike. And likable. I guess you could say he’s a dick in more ways than one

Haunt me: alistaircross.com

Published by Alistair Cross

Alistair Cross grew up on horror novels and scary movies, and by the age of eight, began writing his own stories. First published in 2012, he has since co-authored The Cliffhouse Haunting and Mother with Tamara Thorne and is working on several other projects. His debut solo novel, The Crimson Corset, was an Amazon bestseller. The Black Wasp, book 3 in The Vampires of Crimson Cove series is on its way. Find out more about him at: http://alistaircross.com ********************************************************************************************* In collaboration, Thorne and Cross are currently writing several novels, including the next volume in the continuing gothic series, The Ravencrest Saga. Their first novel, The Cliffhouse Haunting, was an immediate bestseller. Together, they hosted the horror-themed radio show Thorne & Cross: Haunted Nights LIVE! which featured such guests as Anne Rice of The Vampire Chronicles, Charlaine Harris of the Southern Vampire Mysteries and basis of the HBO series True Blood, Jeff Lindsay, author of the Dexter novels, Jay Bonansinga of The Walking Dead series, Laurell K. Hamilton of the Anita Blake novels, Peter Atkins, screenwriter of Hellraiser 2, 3, and 4, worldwide bestseller V.C. Andrews, Kim Harrison of the Hollows series, and New York Times best sellers Preston & Child, Christopher Rice, and Christopher Moore. ********************************************************************************************** Currently, Thorne & Cross are hosts of Thorne & Cross: Carnival Macabre, where listeners can discover all manner of demented delights, unearth terrifying treasures, and explore the dark side of the arts.

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