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9780151014484

The Big Bang

Collins, Max Allan; Spillane, Mickey Author

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[Audio CD Library Edition in vinyl case]

Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award

[*Read by Stacy Keach]

The toughest private eye in fiction takes on the Swinging Sixties. Originally begun and outlined by Spillane in the mid-sixties, and expertly completed by his longtime collaborator Max Allan Collins, The Big Bang is vintage Mike Hammer on acid--literally.

In midtown Manhattan, Mike Hammer, recovering from a near-fatal mix-up with the Mob, runs into drug dealers assaulting a young hospital messenger. He saves the kid, but the muggers are not so lucky. In a New York of flashy discotheques, swanky bachelor pads, and the occasional dark alley, Hammer deals with doctors and drug addicts, hippie chicks and hit men, meeting changing times with his timeless brand of violent vengeance.

Hammer and his beautiful, deadly partner Velda take on the narcotics racket in New York, just as the streets have dried up and rumors run rampant of a massive heroin shipment due any day.

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In midtown Manhattan, Mike Hammer, recovering from a near-fatal mix-up with the Mob, runs into drug dealers assaulting a young hospital messenger. He saves the kid, but the muggers are not so lucky. Hammer considers the rescue a one-off, but someone has different ideas, as indicated by a street-corner knife attack. With himself for a client, Hammer--and his beautiful, deadly partner Velda--take on the narcotics racket in New York just as the streets have dried up and rumors run rampant of a massive heroin shipment due any day. In a New York of flashy discotheques, swanky bachelor pads, and the occasional dark alley, Hammer deals with doctors and drug addicts, hippie chicks and hit men,meeting changing times with his timeless brand of violent vengeance. Originally begun and outlined by Spillane in the mid-sixties, and expertly completed by his longtime collaborator Max Allan Collins, The Big Bang is vintage Mike Hammer on acid...literally.


Amazon Exclusive Essay: Mickey and Me by Max Allan Collins, Author of The Big Bang

I'm thirteen years old. On a family vacation. Back home, I've been eyeing the lurid covers of Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer paperbacks, but I haven't dared a purchase. Here I risk One Lonely Night, with its cover of a mostly nude damsel. "How old are you?" "Sixteen!" "Are you sure?" I throw down 35 cents, and soon am devouring fever-dream prose in back of a Pontiac.

I'm eighteen. A senior in high school. I've written three novels in the Spillane style, receiving numerous rejections but also encouragement. I've collected everything of Mickey's I can lay hands on. I have written him perhaps 30 fan letters. He has never responded.

I am twenty-two. At the Writers Workshop in Iowa City. My mentor, Richard Yates, encourages my pursuit of smart pulp fiction; others don't. For my thesis on a major American writer, I choose Spillane. When my first novel sells, my Workshop stock rises. I send Mickey the book; he responds, welcoming me to the club.

I'm 33. In Milwaukee, I'm asked to liaison between the annual mystery convention (Bouchercon) and special guest Mickey Spillane. Fearful my hero will be a monster, I'm taken to meet him at his hotel room. "Mickey, this is Max Collins, he's..." "I know Max! We been corresponding for years!" I say, "Right Mickey--one letter from you, one hundred letters from me." We are immediate friends. Soon I'm sitting in his outdoor bar in South Carolina, where he flirts with a pretty neighbor named Jane. She's gonna be the next Mrs. Spillane, Mickey predicts. He's right, as usual.

I am 45. I'm in Florida for the launch of the Mike Danger comic book that Mickey and I have developed. My wife and I are walking along the beach. Ahead of us are two kids--Mickey Spillane, 77, and Nathan Collins, 11. Mickey and Nate are teasing each other, Mickey bumping into him, Nate bumping back. They are laughing and it echoes off the water--hear it?

-Max Allan Collins

(Photo © Bamford Studio)



About the Author:

MAX ALLAN COLLINS is the author of many works, including the best-selling graphic novel Road to Perdition and the Shamus-winning Nathan Heller novels.

MICKEY SPILLANE (1918–2006) sold hundreds of millions of books. He introduced iconic detective Mike Hammer to readers in 1947 with I, the Jury, and was named a Mystery Writers of America Grand Master in 1995.

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