Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Loser's Town: A Novel by Daniel Depp

Loser's Town takes a look at the grittier side of Hollywood. David Spandau, a former movie stuntman, is now a private investigator who collects Western memorabilia and novels. He is hired by Bobby Dye, an actor, to investigate a threatening note he's received. Terry, a charming and dangerous Irishman, does some sleuthing for Spandau. As it turns out, Terry is a little too charming for his own good and attracts the wrong woman. Spandau uncovers lots of shady business along with a few surprises in this gritty noir mystery.

I enjoyed this novel. It's nicely paced with lots of action balanced with some slower sections giving the reader time to recover. I enjoyed reading the background information about the characters as I got further into the story. The side story featuring Potts and Squiers was interesting and I enjoyed their antics. The mystery part of the novel got a little lost and wishy-washy in parts, though. While I was waiting for the mystery part to pick up again, my interest started to wane and I got lost in the plot a few times. I think I had everything straight by the end and enjoyed it overall.

Depp has created an oddball and quirky collection of characters for this novel. I really liked Spandau. From some reason I kept picturing him as Dennis Farina. It's probably because I've seen him play a character or two who made wise ass, sarcastic remarks and had that wry sense of humour. Spandau was younger than Farina, though. Terry was quite charming and accomplished almost unbelievable feats in love conquests as well as the martial arts. I was almost sad that he got himself into so much trouble.

One word of warning. This book is peppered with profanity and racial slurs and is bound to offend some people. If you are easily offended this book might not be for you. However, if you are looking for good fictional read about the filth that surely exists beneath the glamour and glitz of Hollywood, I'm sure you'll enjoy this book.

It'll be interesting to see what Depp has in store for us in his next Spandau adventure. I'm sure it won't be boring.

Daniel Depp is half-brother to Johnny Depp. According to the press release that accompanied the book, Daniel and Johnny "have collaborated on films, making Daniel's knowledge of Hollywood absolutely authentic."


For more information about this book, please visit the Penguin Canada website.

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