RARA-AVIS: Re: Writers who have "disappeared" from the public eye

From: Kevin Burton Smith ( kvnsmith@thrillingdetective.com)
Date: 06 May 2008

John wrote:

> And what's become of David M. Pierce? He had three pretty fair LA PI
> books
> in the late 80s and then disappeared from the face of the earth.

Ah, yes. That P.I. would be Vic Daniel, whom I always sorta of as a Shell Scott for the nineties. Although he wore his big crazy heart on his sleeve, he shared an attitude that went straight back through Scott to Bellem's Dan Turner and Latimer's Bill Crane, and if his adventures don't always quite achieve the lighthearted zaniness (and old Testament-style justice) of some of his glorious predescessors, well, they came awful close at times. And this was a "kinder, gentler" era, after all.

Slightly shady, highly quirky L.A. P.I. Vic was 6'7'' in his outsized Hawaiian shirt and was ably, albeit somewhat reluctantantly, assisted by Sara, an adolescent, would-be punk/poetess. He had an office on the wrong end of Hollywood Boulevard in a failing strip mall where he kept his Mac, Betsy and one of his four guns, all Police Positives. He also has one in his car (a pink-and-blue Nash Metropolitan), one at home, and an unlicensed one he sometimes carried. He also had a mean way with a misquotation, always circling but never quite hitting the mark.

Maybe the kinder, gentler times weren't so kind and gentle after all.

The author was born in Montreal (Yay, team!), and in one of his author bios it said he had "pursued the typical career path of an aspiring writer-aluminum company slave, furniture salesman, reporter, truck driver, door-to-door magazine salesman, stage manager, actor, bartender and hatcheck girl," as well as writing lyrics for Alice Cooper, Chad 'n' Jeremy and John Entwistle. After living for several years in London and Los Angeles, he made his home in Paris. I met him once, briefly, and he seemed like a pretty cool guy. And at the time, his mom still lived in Montreal.

But he actually wrote six books in the series, as well as a couple of short stories, John. the novels are Down in the Valley (1989), Hear the Wind Blow Dear (1989), Roses Love Sunshine (1989), Angels in Heaven (1992), Write Me a Letter (1993) and As She Rides By (1996).

So you have some catching up to do.


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