cover image The Big Bang

The Big Bang

Mickey Spillane and Max Allan Collins, read by Stacy Keach, Blackstone Audio, unabridged, six CDs, 7.5 hrs., $29.95 ISBN 978-1-4417-3514-0

A triple combination of talent comes together to bring the iconic Mike Hammer back for a new adventure. Collins, working with Spillane's incomplete manuscript and copious notes, has completed a sterling addition to the Hammer canon. The third creative element to this mix is the impeccable vocal artistry of Stacy Keach, an actor who for a generation is the embodiment of Mike Hammer. The story is simple enough: Hammer has returned to New York after spending some time in Florida where he was nursing wounds received in an encounter with the Mob. He isn't back long before he's immersed in another case, this one involving the burgeoning drug trade of the 1960s. Keach's smooth, confident reading perfectly captures Spillane's most famous creation, whether he's delivering a punch in the face, a slug from a .45, or a kiss to a dame. Pure unabashed, pleasurable pulp. A Houghton Mifflin Harcourt hardcover (Reviews, Mar. 1). (May)