Publication Date: May 29, 2012
In Bite Me by Mike Faricy, Devlin Haskell is a private investigator from St. Paul, Minnesota. After an ill-advised encounter with a woman he already knows to be a ten on the crazy meter, Dev finds himself arrested for kidnapping, rape… and the murder of the woman’s husband. As the bodies pile up and the crazy lady disappears, Dev realizes that getting out of this one will not be easy. Aided by his somewhat alcohol-impaired lawyer and countered by a determined police detective, Dev sets out to connect the dots that will prove his innocence.
Bite Me is the third novel in the Dev Haskell series.
Devlin Haskell is a cross between Stephanie Plum and Jim Rockford with a noir, Mike Hammer, kind of twist (in the sense of the rules getting in the way of what’s right). He gets into a series of situations that are beyond his control and with which he must deal — if not directly then head on — through his own to connect the dots investigation technique (Rockford). The character has a very classic P.I. feel that I found to be somewhat comfortable. An example of this is his borrowing a computer from a friend and not realizing that it must be charged. He’s a phone and in-person kind of detective — brass tacks. Dev drinks hard and plays hard and his playing hard helps him to get into some of the scrapes that he does. Dev is written as a hot mess but with such humanity that we want him to discover the truth and clear his own name.
The premise of the plot line is a good one. It’s simple enough to see it coming but with the sort of twists and turns so that the ending retains some surprise. The true character of this novel isn’t based on the open and close but all the spots in-between. We are on this ride with Dev from the moment we meet until the end. At one point we go to the monitoring office with Dev and at another, we’re with him as he gives advice to a friend’s son. Despite this being third in a series, it’s an easy stand-alone.
The only beef I have with this novel is that its first-person point of view and Dev is a bit of a douche bag. Women are either stunning or hideously fat. I’m not saying that his judgment isn’t inconsistent with the character — in fact, it’s right in line. I’m just saying that this is maybe a hint of his dumbassery and makes me a little not sorry that he gets caught up in the mess in which he’s entangled. Maybe that’s the sign of a believable character?
For more reviews of the by Mike Faricy, read Tutti Frutti, the fifth novel of the Devlin Haskell series.
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