Google+ Bookslingers Blog: Deadwood Meets the Maltese Falcon With Less Cussin'

Deadwood Meets the Maltese Falcon With Less Cussin'

(According to YouTube, if you enjoy Old Time-y videos of Mark Twain, you will also enjoy Beirut's surrealist "Elephant Gun" music video)

This here is the only known footage of professional badass snark, Mark Twain. The footage was recorded by Thomas Edison (elephant killer and sub-par inventor. TESLA 4EVAH!) in 1909.

He could extend his static death ray around my borders anytime, if you know what I mean.
Now Mark Twain lead a very interesting life (according to the terrifying claymation where he meets Satan) but his life pales in comparison to the death-defying exploits of one P.K Pinkerton, intrepid hero of Caroline Lawrence's The Case of the Deadly Desperados

“My name is P.K. Pinkerton and before this day is over I will be dead." 

Pinkey is in a world of trouble. After he stumbles on his murdered foster parents in the frontier of the Wild West, he has only enough time to grab his medicine bag before Whittlin' Walt and his band of blood-thirsty thugs return to finish him off. He barely escapes to Virginia City with the rogues hot on his trail before a tricky "Soiled Dove" steals the deed to his fortune - a silver mine. Can Pinkey live long enough to claim his inheritance or will Whittlin' Walt skin him alive while reciting some Walt Whitman poetry (Ugh. Honestly cannot think of a worse way to go - unless it was E.E Cummings)?

Seriously rip roaring. I had no intentions of reading this book. And then I read the first sentence. And suddenly it was an hour later and I was shouting "PINKEY 4EVAH!"
 Part Lakota, master of disguise, Methodist, and son of one of the famous Pinkerton detectives, Pinkey is like no other hero out there. He struggles with his "thorn" that makes him unable to read people's emotions but nothing, not even three deadly desperados, are going to stop him.

Lawrence's Wild West, like her fabulous Roman Mystery series, paints life in Virginia City with a broad brush. There's ‘Poker Face Jace’ with dollar bills where a heart should be, "Soiled Doves" and dancing girls, Chinese workers (including Ping who I hope shows up in the next book), miners, corrupt hotel owners, newspapermen and even a surprise appearance by the one and only Samuel Clemens and Samuel Clemen's moustache.  

The best part of this book was the big black bold one on the spine that tells us that this is the first of many mysteries featuring the singular P.K. Pinkerton.

In short: Deadwood meets the Maltese Falcon with less cussin'.