The Big Bang Title: The Big Bang
Release: May 4, 2010
ISBN: 978-1-8491-6041-4 (hardcover); 978-0-5475-2170-1 (paperback)
Publisher: Harcourt
Purchase: HC: | PB:


In midtown Manhattan, Mike Hammer, recovering from a near-fatal mix-up with the Mob, runs into drug dealers assaulting a young hospital messenger. He saves the kid, but the muggers are not so lucky. Hammer considers the rescue a one-off, but someone has different ideas, as indicated by a street-corner knife attack.

With himself for a client, Hammer — and his beautiful, deadly partner Velda — take on the narcotics racket in New York just as the streets have dried up and rumors run rampant of a massive heroin shipment due any day. In a New York of flashy discotheques, swanky bachelor pads, and the occasional dark alley, Hammer deals with doctors and drug addicts, hippie chicks and hit men, meeting changing times with his timeless brand of violent vengeance. Originally begun and outlined by Spillane in the mid-sixties, and expertly completed by his longtime collaborator Max Allan Collins, The Big Bang is vintage Mike Hammer on acid . . . literally.



The Rap Sheet: A High Point for Hammer


Kirkus Reviews: "Sentences are packed with gritty detail, action scenes have more kicks and slams than a championship karate playoff and the plot—Hammer takes on the narcotics mob on the eve of a big heroin shipment to Manhattan in the mid-'60s—is tight."

Library Journal: "The image of a brooding figure contemplating the decline evident all around him, along with characters done in broad strokes, invite comparisons with enormously entertaining confection with its politically incorrect views, giving fans of the Mad Men TV series as well as proponents of vigilante justice something to talk about over the watercooler."

Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine: ***, "There's a clever concept at the center of the plot, a fine finishing twist, and plentiful humorous examples of the older writer's influence on his younger acolyte, a far superior writer."

The A.V. Club: B-, "Though it came from two authors, Bang has a clear, consistent narrative voice....The pace clips along, as conversation leads to assault leads to conversation leads to sex. The ending, inevitable as it is, is bold enough to be memorable."

Chicago Sun-Times: "Mike Hammer is the original hard-boiled dick — shoot first, dodge questions later....Fun, if you don't take it very seriously and think of it as a slightly skewed dream you once had."

The Post and Courier: "a great success.... The Big Bang is filled with classic Spillane villains, vixens and a healthy dose of Velda."

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: "Collins saved this manuscript and finished it in a way that would make Spillane happy."

Ed Gorman's Blog: "Collins keeps the Spillane legend fresh and lively with his consummate craftsmanship. This was a two-sitting book for me. I couldn't wait to get back to it. And you won't either."

Bish's Beat: "This is the real Mike Hammer, smart, intuitive, and the toughest sumbitch to ever fire a .45 or throw a fist full of knuckles into a hood's ugly puss.... The Big Bang is a hurricane of fresh air blowing away almost all pretenders to the throne."

Bookgasm: "Hammer fans, get excited for this return to form. And for those who have never read Spillane, you have a lot of catching up to do."

Bookreporter: "a thing of dark, rugged beauty ... the real deal, the real Spillane and the real Hammer ... will satisfy the hardcore, hard-boiled Spillane fan and send the uninitiated off in search of both Spillane's and Collins's backlists."

Somebody Dies: "the ending of The Big Bang is just stunning.... It may in fact be one of the best of the series."

CrimeSpace: "The world around you may be turning upside down, you may be going through some of the worst crap ever, but here's Mike Hammer, Velda (before we learned her unlikely last name), Pat Chambers, and, of course, the .45, to make all the bad stuff go away."

Pulp Fiction Reviews: "[Collins] delivers another marvelous Hammer tale.... Mike Hammer isn't a social worker, he's an exterminator with a talent for dealing with human vermin. It's fun to see him in action again."

BookHound: "...when it comes to actually showing the guys in the street handling the violence and the despair over lost innocence, Mike Hammer comes closer to the truth than any detective I've seen."

Noir Journal: "The story teeters on a near-cataclysm, holding readers on edge until the final sentence."

Vince Keenan: "The Big Bang recaptures Spillane at his peak."

Whatchamacallit Reviews: "one of the best mysteries I've read in years."

Not The Baseball Pitcher: "I can't tell where Spillane leaves off and [Collins] starts."

Lansing State Journal: "It has all the elements that made Spillane one of America's top selling authors: lots of violence, sexual innuendoes, a devious killer and a twisted plot."

SignOn San Diego: "For those still mourning the demise of Mickey Spillane, the news is good."

Sons of Spade: "The story is quite sexist, violent and crude... Just like a Mike Hammer story should be." Best PI Novel of 2010.

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