|Quercus Publishing Childrens|
the guardian Sat 17 January 2009
The moment the legendary Mike Hammer pulled out a cellphone, I lost the will to read on. Mickey Spillane is said to have written the beginning and end of this book, and outlined the middle section, before he died in 2006 aged 88. The rest has been filled in by Max Allan Collins who, although an accomplished crime writer in his own right, is no Mickey Spillane. Hammer, surely, was a creature of 60s and 70s New York, and if he has to be placed in contemporary New York with cellphones, satnavs and 9/11 terrorists, he'd also have to be around 80. The rest of the plot, about the pursuit of archaeologists who appear to have discovered the femur of the biblical giant Goliath, is as absurd as it sounds. Spillane was a true giant of the tough private eye thriller genre, and his reputation here is in danger of being beaten to death with a large bone.