Years ago (wow, just checked, nine years ago), during one of our
periodic discussions of hardboiled/noir sci-fi, Jiro Kimura highly
recommended Richard Bowker's Dover Beach. I started half-heartedly
looking for it. Never searched online, but I'd check for it in the
sci-fi sections any used bookstores I happened to be in.
Finally found it last week. And it is very good. Walter Sands opens a
private eye office in post-apocalyptic Boston, pretty much entirely due
to the crime novels he's read (many people tell him he's read too many
books). A client wanders in wanting Walter to find the scientist whose
clone he believes himself to be. Walter's skeptical the man's really a
clone, but he's happy to take the case. While certainly satisfying as a
hardboiled private eye novel, the book is simultaneously an homage and
even a subtle deconstruction of the genre, as Walter compares his case
to those of Spade, Marlowe and Archer.
So, thanks for the recommendation Jiro, if you're still around these
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