Title: Catch a Fallen Angel
Author: Engleman, Paul
Publisher: Mysterious Press, New York
Publication Date: 1986
Edition: First Edition
Book Condition: G
D-j Condition: VG
Comments: Remainder mark on bottom edge. Glue residue on FFEP. Some soiling on top and bottom edges. D-j has shelf wear. Pages have a few small spots.
Synopsis: Set in the fall of 1969, this tacky shamus-caper features Mark Renzler–a N.Y. gumshoe whose downbeat, cutely ironic narration is more effortful than effective. This time Renzler is in Chicago, hired by a Hefner-like magazine publisher to find Sherri West–a super-centerfold for Paradise who has disappeared just on the eve of her “Angel-of-the-Month” publicity tour. Renzler locates Sherri promptly enough–but it’s not good news for the sleazy client: the drugged-out model is now posing for Nook–the new rival mag to Paradise. Worse yet, Sherri and her photographer/boyfriend are then kidnapped, upsetting both skin-mag moguls and their slimy entourages. So Renzler, while handling the ransom negotiations, tries to figure out who’s behind all this unpleasantness (which soon includes murder and LSD overdoses). Is it an anti-porn preacher–or someone within the Paradise/Nook operations? The plotting–which ultimately involves sex-secrets, blackmail, and feeble motivations all around–is a dank mess. Renzler and his sidekick Nate (who takes over the narration when Renzler temporarily succumbs to LSD poisoning) are charmless. And the gratuitous use of the 1969 Chicago demonstrations as background adds an offensive touch to an already unappetizing concoction.