In the Nameless Detective’s twisty, fast-paced latest (Savages, 2007, etc.), he proves that he can still track lost ladies with the best of them.
Mitchell Krochek’s wife has disappeared, and he wants her found. So Nameless dons his gumshoes and goes to work. Soon enough he discovers that locating Janice Korchek is a lot easier than getting her to return. For starters, she’s all but stripped her husband bare of assets since degenerating into a classic compulsive gambler—horses, cards, slots, anything she can place a bet on—hopelessly in thrall to her raging addiction. Enter QCL (Quick Cash Loans), a company whose target clientele is needy gamblers who can be readily turned into profit centers. Janice, desperate for money, has become a useful QCL call girl. Inevitably, she turns up badly beaten but won’t identify her assailant. While Nameless presses on with the Krocheks, Jake Runyan, the firm’s star field investigator, deals with a far stranger assignment involving Jekyll and Hyde behavior by a young man whose sudden personality change puzzles and dismays those who love him. When it’s finally explained, Nameless concludes warmly, “We get the damnedest cases.”
Pronzini is such a quiet writer that he tends to be undervalued, but he shouldn’t be.