Sayonaraville Paperback – Jan 1 2004
No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.
To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.
Insurance agent Henry Jamison was doing fine in post-World War II Seattle. Too bad someone had to chop his head off with a rusty samurai sword. But at least his office was on the same floor as private investigator Jake Rossiter, whose Gal Friday, Miss Jenkins, discovered the body. Determined to find his neighbor's killer, Rossiter must dodge his archenemy, crooked cop Harvey Blevens, who heads the police investigation. Blevens is focused on the Hashimotos, but Jake suspects the Japanese family may be convenient scapegoats. Colbert's first Rossiter caper, Rat City (2001), was nominated for a Shamus. The second builds on the late 1940s noir atmosphere of corruption, profiteering, and ambition. Rossiter, the cynical realist, does his best to navigate these murky waters with wisecracks, quick fists, and a Chandlerian determination to impose his moral vision on the world. Colbert populates Rossiter's world with a quirky melange of secondary characters, led by the always unpredictable Miss Jenkins. Readers who enjoy Max Allan Collins' Nate Heller mysteries will find a kindred soul in Colbert and Rossiter. Wes Lukowsky
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
Inside This Book(Learn More)
I'D JUST PUT CREAM IN MY COFFEE, WHEN Miss Jenkins ran into the office screaming that our insurance agent down the hall just had his head chopped off with a Samurai sword. Read the first page
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt | Back Cover
Top Customer Reviews
The story opens with the rather grisly discovery of the decapitated body of Henry Jamison by Miss Jenkins. Jamison is Rossiter's insurance agent and his office adjoins Jake's. Lying on the floor near the body is a samurai sword, obviously the murder weapon.
Miss Jenkins has progressed from secretary (girl Friday) to private detective and is about to take her first case. Coincidently (or perhaps not) her first client is a Japanese man named Harry Hashimoto. The fact that he is Japanese does not sit well with Rossiter at all. Remember, this is set in 1948 and Rossiter has just returned from the Pacific where he was fighting the Japanese. He insists that Miss Jenkins drop the case, which she refuses.
When an attempt is made on Miss Jenkins' life, putting her in hospital, Rossiter takes over the case for her. The case seems straightforward enough. Mr Hashimoto wants tot get his business back after it was burned down and the insurance company refused to pay the claim. Huh? Hang on! Insurance company, Japanese...wasn't there some sort of link mentioned earlier? Hmmm.... Would anyone care to guess who the insurance agent might have been?Read more ›
Rossiter's attempts to answer these questions lead him on a dangerous trek through post World War II Seattle, as he copes with his idealistic assistant, amorous widows, crooked cops, mob hitmen, and cantankerous, uncooperative clients. As the death toll mounts, the tough-as-nails private eye uncovers a complex web of deceit even larger than he anticipated.
Shamus Award nominee Colbert's second novel uses the tropes of the hard-boiled detective genre to explore the age-old problem of racism, focusing on ex-Marine Rossiter's ingrained hatred of all things Japanese. Rossiter eventually buries his prejudice under pressure from Miss Jenkins and due to his experiences with Frank Hashimoto, another US veteran.
Rossiter's appeal is a tribute to Colbert's skills, and perhaps a clue to why this novel works so well in spite of the presence of myriad noir clichés--Colbert has added enough subtle touches to Rossiter to raise him above the level of a Mike Hammer clone, winning readers over with his character's gruff charm, tarnished nobility, and keen intelligence. It's an ability Colbert demonstrates repeatedly, as even his "walk-on" characters prove realistic, likeable, and memorable. It's a talent that elevates Sayonaraville above mere formula, resulting in a riveting read with broad appeal.
Most recent customer reviews
This Colbert's second entry in a very entertaining series set in Seattle in the late 1940's, following the debut novel "Rat City. Read morePublished on Aug. 7 2003 by woodstock_ap