Robert Crais brings Elvis Cole into an explosive promise

Robert Craise, The Promise (From

Robert Crais, The Promise (From

Elvis Cole keeps his cool in The Promise while Los Angeles police chase nefarious characters and keep their eyes on him, too.

Yes, novelist Robert Crais has put his free-wheeling private eye in a dangerous predicament again. And of course Cole has quiet agency partner Joe Pike and other connected folks who operate way off the main streets to help him get things done.

In his 19th novel, the Louisiana native again places Cole and his predicaments in the hills of Hollywood. That’s a natural, considering that Crais earned bones scriptwriting for series Hill Street Blues, Cagney and Lacey and Miami Vice before moving into non-fiction for NBC with Cross of Fire, a four-hour documentary about the rise of the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s.

He decided to become a novelist after his father died, and he created Elvis Cole for The Monkey’s Raincoat based on his life, according to his site biography.

And it’s been a wild ride since, resulting in Crais earning the Ross Macdonald Literary Award in 2006 and being named a Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America in 2014.

In The Promise, Elvis Cole is hired to find a smart woman who can build explosives. But things aren’t what they seem at first or second glance.

Canine patrolman Scott James and his beloved Maggie come into the caper, and all three must attempt separately and together to make sense of the clues in a way that sorts out the good guys from the bad guys and allows people in high places to see things in sharper focus.

Crais keeps things hopping with new and current themes.

Here’s a suggestion from left field. I’d love to see Harry Bosch and Elvis Cole get together in those Hollywood Hills, Michael Connelly and Robert Crais. Hey, Harry reluctantly got into the private eye biz in your last one, Michael. Collaboration, good sirs? Take turns writing chapters? I say it’d be a detective writing blockbuster …

Here’s the link to Crais’ site, the source for the book photo above.

Do you prefer Harry Bosch’s straight-shooting ways or Elvis Cole’s free-form style in the LA hills of detective fiction, and why? Do you think Harry Bosch and Elvis Cole could live together in the pages of the same novel, and why? Who’s your favorite detective fiction writer, and why?


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