For fans of the popular author of Road to Perdition, here is an opportunity to see a young writer developing his themes and techniques. Two short stories from the late 1960s reveal the strong influences of Jim Thompson and James M. Cain on Max Allan Collins's hard-boiled career. And a previously unpublished caper novel, Shoot the Moon, confirms Collins's debt to his crime novel mentor Donald Westlake. "I present these stories," says Collins in his Introduction, "because the young writer I once was very desperately wanted to be published, and read." With millions of books sold in the exciting Nate Heller, Mallory, Quarry and Nolan series, plus his posthumous collaborations with Mickey Spillane, Collins has more than achieved that ambition. These early works provide a glimpse of the young crime writer developing his formidable skills.
Bookgasm: “While the early works of many writers are so embarrassingly bad that the author frequently goes out of his way to keep them from being republished, Collins’ are wonderfully involving and entertaining, even if we did not already know what the future held for him. This is essential reading for his fans…”
Pulp Fiction Reviews: “digging into this book was akin to finding long lost treasure ala Indiana Jones.” “The book’s real gem is the novella, “Shoot the Moon,” which is a twisted, funny crime caper…do yourselves a favor, pick up a copy and laugh a little. It’s good for the soul.“
Pro-File: Max Allan Collins from Ed Gorman's Blog. August 12, 2013.