This is the first in the Pete Ingalls series of comic mysteries, narrated by Pete Ingalls himself. Who is Ingalls? Let’s just say he thinks he’s a p.i. Let’s further stipulate that he really isn’t. In fact, let’s shake it up and pour it out: Ingalls is actually a chump clerk in a book store who, after reading a bunch of Chandler and Macdonald and Hammett, gets hit on the head with a box of books and wakes up thinking he’s a hard-boiled flatfoot in the classic mold.
So he opens up an office with a business card, a desk bottle of hootch, and the world-weary attitude of a dick who’s seen it all. He finds an actress who needs a day job, a skirt named Stephanie Constantino, to man the phone. He’s all set, our Ingalls. Just about the only thing he doesn’t have is an ability to solve cases. But it turns out that Stephanie does. So cases, in the end, and in spite of everything, and after a series of avoidable but unavoided detours and side-tracks and hi-jinx, get solved.
Yeah, it’s a riot. But there’s a problem. There always is.
This book is out of print. There are a few copies here and there but that’s it, friend.
However: it will soon be re-issued as an e-book. How, under what circumstances, available where—that’s still a comic mystery. We can’t wait until it’s solved. Check back and we’ll keep you posted.