If it weren’t for bad luck, Crag Banyon would have no luck at all. BUM LUCK, the fifth in James Mullaney’s intriguing detective series, has the laughs and the mystery you would expect from a former writer of THE DESTROYER series. It takes place in an alternate Earth where magic and creatures for fairy tales and myths exist.
Crag Banyon’s life is about to hit a winning streak — that streak being that his ex-wife / bane of his existence is about to get remarried. Who is the lucky fellow? Why, a leprechaun, of course, by the name of Finnegan O’Fart. Look, Mullaney is not trying to be the next Dashell Hammett; these books are very much tongue-in-cheek.
The reason that Crag’s ex and her soon-to-be hubby turn up is that they have a case for Crag: Someone has stolen Finnegan’s pot of gold, and they want Crag to retrieve it, since it’s super-important that it’s back in their possession. But all this is really just a ploy to play Crag for a sap. It becomes quite clear that he is being played for a patsy, epecially when some of the big uglies start popping up with ideas that he is going to pay off Finnegan’s debts.
Once bodies start to turn up dead, what is Crag to do, but follow this case, wherever it might take him? That includes the one place no one wants to visit: Leprechaun Land, which is a drunkard’s dream. What Crag discovers is a grand conspiracy no one expected.
BUM LUCK will appeal to all mystery fans who have a sense of humor. The story is very much a reason to hang a few cheap jokes on and poke fun at others. Mullaney honed his chops taking this type of approach while working on THE DESTROYER, and you will see his humor is still there, as well as the storytelling. —Bruce Grossman