M.A.C. Collection From Wolfpack & A Spillane Rave

October 18th, 2022 by Max Allan Collins

Another short update, I’m afraid.

My medical issues are coming to a head and I will be trying to deal with them this week. Good thoughts and crossed fingers are appreciated.

Here is the appearance by Barb and me on the Paula Sands Show recently, promoting Antiques Liquidation.

The first in a new series of e-book boxed sets from Wolfpack is available now – The Max Allan Collins Collection, Volume One: Eliot Ness. Works out to less than a buck a book!


There will be five e-book boxed sets in the overall Max Allan Collins Collection, plus a Mickey Spillane collection.

Come Spy With Me is set for a $.99 Kindle Countdown Deal Oct 19th – 25th.


The first review of the Spillane bio by Jim Traylor and me has just appeared, and it’s strong, despite being from the meanest, toughest reviewing service in the world: Kirkus.

SPILLANE King of Pulp Fiction
Author: Max Allan Collins
Author: James L. Traylor

Review Issue Date: November 15, 2022
Online Publish Date: October 20, 2022
Publisher: Mysterious Press
Pages: 400
Price ( Hardcover ): $26.95
Publication Date: January 10, 2023
ISBN ( Hardcover ): 978-1-61316-379-5
Section: NonFiction

A full-dress biography of the most polarizing practitioner of 20th-century crime fiction.

As Collins and Traylor note, nearly everyone deplored the sex and violence of Mickey Spillane’s (1918-2006) midcentury novels about private eye Mike Hammer—though that didn’t stop the millions of readers who catapulted him to the top of bestseller lists and kept him there. Delving into Spillane’s roots, the authors examine the evolution of comic-book hero Mike Lancer into Mike Hammer, cite contemporaneous reviewers who talked up or trash-talked Hammer’s adventures, and explore Spillane’s multimedia activities during the 10 years (1952-1962) of Hammer’s absence from the printed page. (Why the long silence? Collins and Traylor believe Spillane was waiting for his disadvantageous contract with film producer Victor Saville to expire). Warning in their opening chapter of spoilers ahead, the authors proceed to summarize the mysteries and solutions of all Hammer’s early novels. They’re at their best when mapping the Spillane metaverse, which includes novels, stories, articles, comic strips, radio broadcasts, TV programs, and movies, and weakest in their uncritical praise of their subject as a plotter, stylist, Jehovah’s Witness, and human being (a verdict his first two wives might have contested). “Mickey encouraged our best efforts, all the while sharing his humanity, generosity, and down-to-earth nature,” they write. “This book reflects not just our love for his work, but for the man, with thanks for his encouragement and friendship.” Spillane’s appealing directness provides an endless stream of anecdotes. The authors conclude with a formidable array of appendices, ranging from an autobiographical fragment that takes Spillane from birth to age 14 to an essay on “Ayn Rand and Mickey Spillane” to a brace of bibliographies and an account of some of their own extensive dealings with the author when he was alive and the work Collins has continued to complete since his death.

Fans who’ve been waiting for a life of Spillane will gobble this up.

A decent review of the new volume in the Titan archival Ms. Tree collections comes from the Slings and Arrows site.


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5 Responses to “M.A.C. Collection From Wolfpack & A Spillane Rave”

  1. Stephen Borer says:

    Continued best health wishes : hooray for the Kirkus review !

  2. Hey, Max:

    I very much look forward to cracking open your Spillane biography! And best of luck resolving those persistent health issues. I speak for all of your readers, I’m sure, when I say we want you to be around for many, many years to come.


  3. Fred Blosser says:

    Same as Messrs. Borer and Pierce–good and positive wishes for your health.

  4. Raymond Cuthbert says:

    Prayers and good wishes for you and Barb and the rest of the family with your medical issues coming to a head. I will be thinking of you and awaiting whatever news you (or Nate) can spare on this blog.

  5. Sam says:

    “. . . nearly everyone deplored the sex and violence of Mickey Spillane’s (1918-2006) midcentury novels . . .”

    Not me. Neither were ever gratuitous. They were always plot-driven.

    And the critics always overstate both. How many women does Hammer have sex with in “I, the Jury”? None. (Although one case is ambiguous.)

    [Warning: Plot spoiler.] Critics love to cite the ending of that novel as unnecessarily violent. Really? First, there’s Hammer’s promise to the good friend she murdered. Second, she was reaching for a gun, behind Hammer’s head, while pretending to hug him. If he hadn’t shot her, his brains would’ve been splattered everywhere.

    BTW, did you happen to hear the recently released Wallace interview with AR and MS? It’s very insightful and charming.