Monday, September 11, 2006

Paul Denver's Michael Power series

There's no Thrilling Detective entry for Michael Power, but should be: Power was the PI hero in four paperback mysteries by a British writer called Paul Denver, whose real name was Douglas Enefer (under which he also wrote). I've read two of Denver's books and they are mildly entertaining PI stories full of enjoyable clichés - you know, tough policemen, wisecracking PI's, lusty babes asking for trouble, that stuff. The hero gets knocked down every now and then and he recovers with a stiff whiskey shot.

I just finished The Last Laugh (1965) which was worse than the one I read previously, Dead On Time (also 1965). Power is hired to get his hands on a millionaire's daughter who's mistaken to associate herself with known gangsters. Of course the main gangster gets bumped off - and Power knocked on the head. Pretty much okay, but I wouldn't wait for any treat, if I were you. You just enjoy some clichés or then you don't.

The book contains also a short story by Denver. "No Pictures for Cathy" stars another PI, John Lester, and it starts out with Lester getting knocked down (what a surprise!), but someone had ripped off over ten pages of the book. I was already beginning to wonder just how the story can be so short. The main novel is very short, only some 100 pages. Way to go!

Denver wrote later on in his career some Cannon novelizations, but I haven't as yet read them.

The Finnish translation is from 1966 and it was published in a series that was edited by none other than Jyrki Hämäläinen! I was once told that he doesn't want to talk about these things. A friend of mine, a paperback historian of sorts, phoned him and when he'd said to Hämäläinen that he'd like to talk about the Lepohetki/Siesta series Hämäläinen hung up immediately!

(Note to foreigners: Jyrki Hämäläinen was a "legendary" editor of the rock/teenager magazine called Suosikki. He's also written lots of celeb biographies, in which he himself plays a big part.)


Unknown said...

I have a couple of the Douglas Enefer books, but I've never read them.

Juri said...

I've read one under his real name, and it wasn't much.