Sunday, June 22, 2008

There's a Killer Loose! by Mickey Spillane & Max Allan Collins

This story marks Mickey Spillane's first appearance in EQMM. It was originally a radio script, but it's been recast into story form by Spillane's posthumous collaborator, Max Allan Collins.

The story opens with Terry Devlin, a hospitalized war vet, trapped by the cops in an abandoned building. You can almost hear the voice-over narration before we get the flashback. Devlin has been having periodic blackouts. And people are being murdered. Lots of people believe Terry's the killer. He doesn't know if he is or not. A former girlfriend has gotten him released and taken him in. He's lived peacefully with her and her brother, but now there's been another murder. Devlin is on the run, and the cops are closing in.

Typical Spillane twists and a fine Old-Time Radio flavor make this one a nice entry in EQMM's new Black Mask section.

Bill Crider

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