Now here's a really cool, original PI. There's really no one to compare him with. Frank Boff is not divorced and not a boozer. Instead, he is married with children and loves junkfood. He doesn't carry a gun and most of the time he works for criminals.He IS a great investigator and ex-DEA agent with a lot of underworld contacts that come in handy. He's also laugh-aloud-funny. Boff specializes in helping lawyers defend criminals. He doesn't care what they did, as long as their check don't bounce. You'd figure that would make him unlikable to readers, but Boff is such a great father and husband you can't help but get to like him.
In this, his first novel, he is hired to help out boxer Danny Cullen solve the murder of championship boxer Julio Babbas. When it turns out the Israeli mob is involved, Boff needs the help of some of his criminal contacts to solve the case AND stay alive.
The writing style reminded me of John Sanford, easy to read and witty with good pacing. The boxing details are great, betraying Gottlieb's day job as a sports writer.
A great novel, not just for die-hard hardboiled fans but also for thriller fans in general. Just skip the part where they check Cullen for a wire. I've been sitting uncomfortably for an hour after reading it...