From: George Upper (
Date: 26 Nov 2001

--- Mark Sullivan <> wrote:
> While rereading Benjamin Schutz, I realized just how
> much contemporary
> PI novels, from Parker on, have revolved around
> protecting or saving
> kids.
> I'm tying to figure out how new this trend is.


Well, in some ways it's as old as hard-boiled. I've recently discovered a number of "forgotten" Caroll John Daly stories from the early- to mid-twenties. One of these, which pre-dates what has up till now been considered Daly's first published story by eight months, is about school kids and their unconventional method for passing a standardized test in order to save the reputation of their teacher.

Another of these "lost" stories involves a young girl, too, who sort of redeems the ex-con protagonist with her love and trust.

However, as I don't think anyone has read these stories for decades, I doubt that they were in any way influential on this more recent (thirty-year) trend.

Incidentally, I've just begun putting these works
"lost stories" together for an anthology, perhaps with a handful of Daly's better-known work like "Three Gun Terry" and "The False Burton Combs," along with some critical essays on Daly and the origins of the genre.
(I'm a grad student, as you may know, so I tend to work during school breaks.)


===== George C. Upper III, Editor The Lightning Bell Poetry Journal

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