I was intrigued by Reel Life Crime by Cary Pepper when I was approached to review it.
Private detective Ed Sampas is approached by an “odd couple” for an interesting case. Aristocratic Thelonius Noble and 300 pound Pago Mundy have a problem. Their authentic movie prop (one of only two that exist), the Maltese falcon, has been stolen and they want it back. The recovery must be done quickly and quietly. No police involvement.
Complicating matters are Sampas’ two totally different friends. McNulty, an up-and-up cop, is on the law side and Hank, the gay antiquities dealer, sometimes operates on the other side. Both become intricately meshed in the case.
Comic relief comes with two doped up computer geeks, a beautiful young photographer named Phoebe and Sampas’ nephew Ralph. There is mystery, plot twists and turns, revenge and near-death experiences. The ending is not what one would expect.
I thought this was a great read and highly recommend it. I enjoyed the suspense and the characters were believable and likeable. I have never read The Maltese Falcon or seen the movie but I will now.