The Kind One
Five Star, Dec 2007, $25.95
In 1930s Los Angeles, Danny Landon struggles to recall his recent history having suffered an injury. He has been told by cohorts that he is a hired gun working for malicious gangster Bub “The Kind One” Seitz and that he has a bloody no nonsense past. In fact he is respectfully called “Two Gun Danny” for his homicidal skills.
However, Danny struggles with the descriptions of his violent nature as he finds it difficult to harm anyone. His boss assigns Landon to watch Darla to make sure she is not cheating on him. Landon finds the task despicable as he likes Darla and believes she deserves better than someone spying on her, but challenging Seitz would be suicidal.
Although the plot is a bit thin, readers will enjoy this Depression Era urban noir due to Two Gun Danny; who is a believable protagonist struggling between the description others have of him and what his gut says he is. Tom Epperson also provides a wonderful sense of time and place as 1930s L.A. comes vividly alive. Americana historical mystery fans will enjoy this fine tale wondering which Danny will surface.