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Angel in Black

Nathan Heller, Book 11
Narrated by: Dan John Miller
Series: Nathan Heller, Book 11
Length: 11 hrs and 5 mins
4 out of 5 stars (1 rating)

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Summary

Los Angeles. The City of Angels. The perfect place for a honeymoon… and the worst possible time for a murder.

Vacationing private investigator Nate Heller finds himself a suspect in the LAPD’s investigation of the notorious Black Dahlia murder case. Problem is the butchered starlet, Elizabeth Short, is an old Chicago flame of Heller’s — and only the P.I. himself knows she was blackmailing him for abortion money.

Classic noir at its finest blended to extraordinary effect with historical facts, Max Allan Collins’ Angel in Black crackles with tight plotting and razor-sharp dialogue. With the help of a world-weary, alcoholic Eliot Ness, Heller links the murder to a notorious Cleveland serial killer... while doing his best to stay out of jail and salvage his already troubled new marriage. Along the way he encounters Chicago boxer Barney Ross, fellow suspect Orson Welles, and zany gangster Mickey Cohen.“The characters, historical and fictional, come delightfully to life... Collins paints a web of interconnections in a tightly woven plot and posits a radical solution to a crime that still resonates in literature and movies.” - Publishers Weekly (starred review)

©2011 Max Allan Collins (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

Critic reviews

“The characters, historical and fictional, come delightfully to life... Collins paints a web of interconnections in a tightly woven plot and posits a radical solution to a crime that still resonates in literature and movies.” ( Publishers Weekly)

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Profile Image for The Dark Side
  • The Dark Side
  • 08-03-17

Angel in Black Noir Mystery

I have to confess I love All the Nathan Heller series by Max Allen Collins . Like all the great gritty detective heroes in the 49s and 50s he is a hard drinking . Love em and leave em type of guy. All the books revolve around some famous crime back then , or an event.

The the thing about Nat is he's very likable even as he's insulting you. These guys are gangsters and the women are dames . I believe anyone who enjoys these. Stereotyped books will love this book. It' occurs around the Black Dahlia murder. Don John Miller narrates this one and is perfect ,

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jim Fletcher
  • 25-10-19

Black Dahlia Solved?

Always interesting with Miller's mix of historical fact and free use of fiction to complete his stories, Nate Heller finds himself personally invested in the infamous Black Dahlia murder. While the true crime story has yet to be solved, Nate through Dan John Miller's great delivery and Collins very cool take on the crime, we do get this version of a resolution of the crime. Along the way, Nate's good friend Elliot Ness shows up to help with the investigation. One of my favorite things about Miller's audio delivery aside from being the consummate Nate Heller is his spot on delivery as Elliot Ness in a voice inspired by the TV Ness Robert Stack. This is a great entry into the Nate Heller series. Enjoy.

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  • E. Allison
  • 11-03-19

My first Heller book, and it won't be my last!

My first Heller book and consider me a convert if the other books are anything like this.

Being a fan of true crime, I am obviously interested in the Black Dahlia murder and this book does a great job of melding the reality with fiction. L.A. of the 1940s was truly Hollywood’s golden age and was a hotbed of now legendary characters, both famous and infamous, and it is highly entertaining to see these people interact. Even if your only knowledge of the period is the movie LA Confidential, many of the names will jump out at you. I liked the mix of fact and fiction, and I want to go back and refresh myself on the case, this book has certainly revived my interest in the subject. Having played LA Noire, it’s a case where characters I didn’t realise were real people (but probably should have) jump out at you. The entire writing style of the book is like a modern take on Raymond Chandler, your very classic hard-boiled detective but with a modern smoother flow. As a fan of detectives like Marlowe and Nero Wolf, this novel touches on a lot of my interests simultaneously.

The characters are well fleshed out and believable, with Nathan standing out strongly as a sympathetic yet flawed character, someone I will enjoy finding out more about because I fully intend to read the other books in the series.

The reader may be the most perfect match of reader to character that I’ve ever read, his astonishing array of voices are deeply impressive, and I am delighted to see he reads the other books too. He just brings the characters to vivid life and completely does justice to Nathan. I adored his reading style – from the wry humour, to the hardboiled tough guy, and all the way through the very distinct cast of other characters. Admittedly, his female voices are often quite funny but as a male reader, that’s just going to happen. His male voices are incredible though – the variety of voices and accents are a delight!

As a fan of true crime, LA Confidential and LA Noire, this book hit all the buttons and I really enjoyed it. Pair that with an exceptional reading and you have a real winner here.

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  • Empress Karen
  • 06-02-16

"Long Arm Of Justice"

Would you consider the audio edition of Angel in Black to be better than the print version?

yes, as a big fan of Dan John Miller, reader brings this series to life. If read, it would have been way too long. Dan gets you into this version of the crime. If you are new to this author, pick the story with characters you like and Dan will really get you into the story.

What did you like best about this story?

With the new 1.25x speed, the action and pace made a great match and moved the story along.
This is a gruesome murder, and author has a way with words that can take some of the creepiness out, but not all, so beware if you have a weak stomach.

Which scene was your favorite?

lots of clues if you can catch them. This is my first of 3 books I own in this series. #1 and Bye Bye story of Marylyn Monroe. I started with this story as it peaked my curiosity. I don't know much about this author as I purchased books due to Dan John Miller reading them.

This is great entertainment if you like noir type films/stories. Author weaves the 1920's and forward so well into a mystery. I can't wait to listen to the other stories I own.

Any additional comments?

I am a core Romance fan, see Nora Roberts Pagan Stone which Dan reads. This is his best for me.

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  • Brandon
  • 23-03-15

Best story since the Nitti Trilogy

This was easily my favorite Nathan Heller novel since the original Frank Nitti Trilogy.
I would definitely recommend reading it.