The Morals and Mysteries of Max Monroe P.I. is an episodic collection of eight stories. And while each story is able to stand alone, together they develop a unique and individual personality in Max, the narrator, and a thoughtful perspective on a range of contemporary social mores. With deliberate intent, and partly in homage, Monroe encapsulates much of the enduring image of the Private Detective - in short, philosopher and hero, individual and idiosyncratic - a persona that has been built up, and cherished, by over a century of celebrated writing within this genre.
Each tale is a mystery solved in the time-honoured tradition of keeping the reader both entertained and intrigued. The narrative is gritty and realistic, though purposely avoids situations steeped in blood and violence, peopled instead with quirky and unusual characters.
Each drama provides the opportunity for Max Monroe to moralize on certain issues. While the discourse is intended to provoke, it’s not done with the sort of savagery that can alienate. The intention is to keep the reader on-side and to stimulate thought. A wry humour accompanies much of the proceedings.
The stories in this collection are: -
Tuesday on My Mind ~ A femme fatale’s quest for retribution introduces Max Monroe, a man as individual and unconventional as his client.
The Playgirl ~ When asked to investigate a supposed burglary Max Monroe finds himself caught up in bigger issues and double standards.
The Stewardess ~ Max Monroe enters the sleazy world of sex, drugs and rock n roll when he goes on the search for a missing master tape, returning the client’s principles along the way.
Sweet Charlotte ~ Sweet, Charlotte might be, but not innocent, and when she goes missing Max Monroe finds himself with the invidious task of defending the girl's right to pursue a career within the sex industry.
A Taste of Honey ~ When Honey Harrison, a feminist lawyer with a client who is being blackmailed, meets Max Monroe, myths explode like the bubbles in champagne.
The Disappearing Girl ~ Helen Hendicott, a former super-model, now a successful stockbroker, is being stalked, and as Max Monroe discovers by whom he also uncovers the messy world of selfish desires.
Kim Novak ~ Phil Dood, regular and reliable, suddenly thinks he’s been missing out and wants the world of Max Monroe - loose women and fast cars - but finds it’s not what it all seems.
Sorry ~ Sorry, a former left wing academic turned alcoholic, finds a purpose in life by mentoring his underprivileged nephews, but a yearning to improve their financial position gets him murdered and it's left to Max Monroe to fight the good fight.
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