Max Hamm Fairy Tale Detective, Vol. 1

Frank Cammuso, Author
Frank Cammuso, Author . Nite Owl Comix $14.95 (208p) ISBN 978-0-9720061-4-9
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His name is Max Hamm, and he's the private gumshoe hired to dig out answers from the seedy underbelly of Storybookland in this charming, lavishly illustrated pastiche of the hard-boiled genre and nursery rhymes. A diminutive porcine Mike Hammer, Max is more than able to handle the plethora of tough guys and sizzling, deceptive broads who cross his path. In "The Big Sheep" Hamm investigates the suspicious demise of his partner, Humpty Dumpty, and discovers a web of intrigue involving Bo Peep, Mother Goose, Little Boy Blue and a flock of extremely disgruntled sheep. In the longer "The Long Ever After" Hamm is hired by old flame Snow White to discover the identity of the owner of a lost glass slipper. Tragic romance, sleazy extramarital shenanigans, shocking family secrets and a galaxy of tarnished storybook stars collide in this tightly written yarn. Cammuso's artwork expertly straddles the line between stark black-and-white comics art and lush animation-influenced wash illustrations akin to those found in children's books. Though it travels well-worn territory, this clever mix is solid entertainment and the Little Golden Book–inspired format is just icing on the cake. (July)

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