Target Lancer Title: Target Lancer
Release: November 27, 2012
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An explosive novel that uncovers new facts about the deadly conspiracy to assassinate John F. Kennedy

Long before November 22, 1963, Nathan Heller, “P.I. to the Stars,” knows that a conspiracy is in the works. Several years earlier, Heller had been involved with the Kennedys, the Mob, and the CIA in the early stages of a plan to assassinate Fidel Castro. Shortly after, Heller’s Mafia contact is murdered.

After being interrogated by gangsters and contacted by U.S. Attorney General Robert Kennedy, Heller realizes that he may be the one person who can prevent a devastating political assassination. Only he knows all the players; only he knows why a web of conspirators has targeted the man known to the Secret Service as “Lancer,” John Fitzgerald Kennedy.

Rigorously researched, Max Allan Collins’s Target Lancer is far more truth than fiction.


Publishers Weekly: "an original take on what may well be the most-written-about crime in history"

Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine: ****, “While being so unapologetically hardboiled you can crack a tooth on it, Target Lancer is also an intricately plotted thriller and a unique epic historical adventure.”

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: "fascinating" "fresh and surprising" "Another fine addition to the Heller series, and one that has me eager to read what comes next"

Bookgasm: "chillingly credible…one hell of a gripping story." "perhaps the best and most unforgettable entry of the series…Target Lancer is not to be missed."

Little Known Gems: "[Target Lancer] is a stunning tour-de-force: the memoirs of a private detective, both thriller and historical novel, written in a high humorous style and, the topping on the cake, with an eye-opening afterward by the author explaining his use of sources….a landmark novel"

Bookreporter: "Target Lancer will be of interest not only to fans of Collins and Heller, but also to history buffs in general, who regard Kennedy’s violent death as one of the major question marks of the last century."

Mike Dennis Noir: "Target Lancer is a fresh treatment of the runup to the most significant single event of the twentieth century, and Nate Heller is the perfect protagonist to lead us through it. Max Allan Collins has hit a home run."

Pulp Fiction Reviews: "one of the most gripping mystery plots ever put to paper…Target Lancer is a masterful work not to be missed."

The Rap Sheet: "Collins is a master at integrating facts with his fiction"

Not the Baseball Pitcher: "Recommended."

MysteryPeople: "a unique piece of thrilling detective fiction…a fresh take on the plot against Kennedy" "and a climax that gives that other historical assassination novel, The Day Of The Jackal, a run for [its] money."

Mystery Maven: "masterful" "[Target Lancer is] another winner for Max Allan Collins and his Nathan Heller series and an important historical novel about the Kennedy era."

Ed Gorman's Blog: "[Collins's] richest and most powerful Heller yet."

Noirwhale: "Target Lancer is as much a work of historical fiction as it is a crime thriller, and when the genres collide under Max’s direction the results are quite sexy…I really loved Target Lancer, you will too."

Off the Shelf: "thoroughly researched, [Target Lancer] avoids the pitfalls that some other historical based mysteries fall prey to." "simply natural in its approach and sincere in its story…Target Lancer is the ticket you’ve paid for, a solid novel by a solid writer."

Vivid Scribe: "an intricately detailed, and therefore highly convincing, political thriller that offers a completely fresh take on such a familiar situation and cast of characters." "a truly commendable bit of fiction."

Sons of Spade: "classic Heller. A well-researched story that manages to weave a historical plot together with a nice little pulp-style story that would fit in Black Mask magazine."

At the Scene of the Crime: "I once again found myself absolutely entranced by the writing and Collins’ skill at combining fact with fiction, especially over such an infamous true crime case." "highly recommended."

Historical Novel Society: "Target Lancer is Collins’s fourteenth Nathan Heller novel, but one need not have read the previous books in this series to enjoy this story; it easily stands on its own. It will appeal to hardboiled detective fans and Kennedy buffs. Recommended."

Mystery One: "Mr. Collins at his best.…If one has not discovered Mr. Collins yet, Target Lancer is a great place to start."

David Williams: “If you enjoy fast paced, hardboiled detective writing then you should be reading the Nathan Heller novels.”

Greenwich Library: “Target Lancer is a terrific, suspenseful thriller with fun characters (real and fictional) and solid historical background.”


The Big Thrill. November 2012.


Larger Cover Image (657 x 999 JPG)

Chapter One courtesy Criminal Element

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