While I wasn’t thrilled with author Adam Christopher’s book Hang Wire, I’m having a blast with his tongue-in-cheek mystery/detective series ‘Ray Electromatic Mysteries.’
Raymond Electromatic is a robot. He’s the last of his kind … a programmed assassin created by the U.S. government. But the program is what got killed and Ray is the only survivor. He masquerades as a private detective, doing odd P.I. jobs in between assassinations. He’s got a twenty-four hour memory tape limit, but he works with a room-sized computer named Ada who is connected to him wirelessly, often offering unwanted advice, and on occasion just a little bit pout-y (he can move around and she’s stuck in the office).
In this novella, Standard Hollywood Depravity, Ray is hired to put a hit on Honey … a go-go dancer in a Hollywood club. Ray’s a robot and he doesn’t have any feelings about this one way or the other, and he certainly shouldn’t ever be questioning his directives, but when the club is filling up with gangsters serving different bosses from all around town, the hit becomes much harder and Ray can’t help but wonder if Honey is truly the target.
Ray and Ada have a busy night, full of danger and intrigue.
Christopher does a really splendid job of capturing the noir mystery mood. The story feels like it’s set in the 1950’s but with a robot and wireless connectivity available. And the guest characters and setting (such as a Hollywood club, complete with coat-check station) keep us in the noir-mystery mode.
I don’t always believe in the locations that Christopher describes, but there’s just the right balance between the characters, the mystery, and the humor, with the characters driving the story (which I prefer) that I don’t mind walking through a back alley or a visit to the Hollywood sign that doesn’t quite feel right.
This series is proving to be a lot of fun and I look forward to the next adventure (already on my Kindle).
Looking for a good book? Mix a little sci-fi, with some hard-boiled noir mystery, add a jigger of fun and you get Adam Christopher’s Standard Hollywood Depravity.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
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Standard Hollywood Depravity
author: Adam Christopher
series: Ray Electromatic Mysteries #1.5
paperback, 144 pages