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Sayonaraville: A Jake Rossiter & Miss Jenkins Mystery Paperback – Jan 1 2004


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 287 pages
  • Publisher: Uglytown Productions; 1 edition (Jan. 1 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0972441212
  • ISBN-13: 978-0972441216
  • Product Dimensions: 19.2 x 12.9 x 2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 277 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,019,453 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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First Sentence
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
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By Untouchable on May 2 2004
Format: Paperback
SAYONARAVILLE is the 2nd book in the Jake Rossiter and Miss Jenkins series following on from the tough hardboiled RAT CITY. Curt Colbert has created a private detective series that has the look and feel of a pulp detective novel written in the 1940s. Jake Rossiter is a hard-bitten, hard drinking private detective working in Seattle. The year is 1948, Rossiter has returned home from the war to find his town overrun by corruption and feels that it's his duty to see that the rats feeding off the honest joes get the punishment they deserve.
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?
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Format: Paperback
As Sayonaraville opens, Jake Rossiter faces three questions: First, who beheaded insurance agent Henry Jamison, whose office occupies the same floor as Rossiter's own detective agency? Second, can he turn the crime into a paying proposition? Third, can he convince his assistant, Miss Jenkins, to abandon an unprofitable investigation into an arson case involving a destitute Japanese family?
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.
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Format: Paperback
It's all here!! A riveting tale of murder, racketeering, money-laundering, corrupt cops, hit men, and strippers all told against the backdrop of the post-World War II period in Seattle's Chinatown with its dark alleys, secret passageways and secret ways. Colbert has us jump right in with the story when Rossiter is confronted by the headless body of his insurance agent. Rossiter, coolheaded as always, hopes the dead man thought to write a policy on himself. Why did Rossiter's insurance agent lose his head (literally) to a rusted samurai sword? Why would anyone kill his insurance agent, especially one who is bald, middle-aged, and kindly? The lingering bitterness of the war feeds the suspicions of Rossiter, private eye and veteran of the war in the Pacific. He wants nothing to do with the Harry Hashimoto case taken by Miss Jenkins, now his junior partner. She can sink or swim on her own. Rossiter has a more important case to solve. In this world you can't afford to lose your insurance agent. Tension builds when Rossiter butts heads with his old nemesis, hit man Eddie Valhalla and his gun moll, Zazu. Speaking of heads, just how many more hits to the head can Rossiter take? Between shady cops and shifting antagonists, maybe he should take to wearing a helmet. When Harry Hashimoto's brother, Frank, an embittered, decorated war hero of the famed all-Nisei 442nd Regiment, takes the bullets intended for Rossiter, saving the life of the private eye, Rossiter feels his own prejudices slip away. Armchair sleuths will have a field day with this one. Sayonaraville is a must-read book and a real page-turner. Makes a great gift for mystery-lovers!
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