Friday, September 21, 2018

Forgotten Books: Scarred Faces - Hank Janson (Stephen D. Frances)

SCARRED FACES is the second novella by Stephen D. Frances featuring Hank Janson (which is also the by-line, of course). In this early tale, Hank is still a traveling cosmetics salesman who just happens to wind up in the middle of violent crimes. This time it’s an acid attack on a beautiful young woman that leaves her dead. Shortly after that, two thugs kidnap Hank and try to take him for a ride because they think he may have seen too much. Of course he escapes, and from there it’s not long until he’s mixed up in a dangerous racket that involves several more beautiful young women, at least one of whom wants Hank dead.

This yarn isn’t driven quite as much by coincidence as the first Hank Janson, WHEN DAMES GET TOUGH, which tells me that Frances’s plotting may be getting better. His tough guy prose still doesn’t sound the least bit authentic American, but I don’t really care. He can tell a story and keep the reader racing along, flipping those digital pages. There are three more novellas in this collection I’m reading (I didn't figure you'd mind looking at the cover by Reginald Heade again), and I’m looking forward to them.

1 comment:

George said...

I'll have to find a HANK JANSON paperback to review for FFB. Back in the day, these books were Hot Stuff!