Monday, February 5, 2018

Hit and Run

The December 1954 issue of “Manhunt” featured a “Complete New Novel” by hardboiled crime writer Richard Deming called “Hit and Run.” The original novella was later expanded by Deming into a lean Pocketbooks paperback release in 1960. “Hit and Run” is an amazingly good story about a hard-luck private eye named Barney who happens to witness a hit-and-run accident involving a beautiful woman driver. He concocts a scheme to blackmail her into engaging him to cover up the accident and keep her out of trouble. From there, Deming takes the reader on a twisty ride not unlike the violent Fawcett Gold Medal short novels of that era. It’s hard to summarize the plot any further without spoiling several jaw-dropping plot twists, but suffice to say that this short novel was a total delight and is worth hunting down.