David Danning

Created by Don Von Elsner

Officially, DAVID DANNING is a lawyer. A very successful lawyer. He runs the prestigious Los Angeles law firm of Danning and Danning with his son, Bob (whom he calls “Duke” and is also a lawyer), and employs a slew of associates, assistants, investigators, paralegals and the like, including his ever-faithful secretary Nell Sheridan.

But most of his success is not from anything Danning’s ever done in a courtroom. His real success comes from his hands-on approach to justice on behalf of his clients. Very hands-on, sometimes. Untangling them from some very convoluted scams.

Suave and sophisticated, this handsome SOB appeared in eight paperback originals in the sixties. In his mid-fifties, he stands 6’4″ tall and weighs in at 200 lbs, none of that fat. He enjoys golf and bridge, and enjoys life to the fullest — there’s no longer a Mrs. Danning. Well versed in judo and jujitsu, he knows how to handle himself, and doesn’t back away.

But after six books (I love those cheeky titles!), his reputation as an ace trouble shooter — and his background as a member of the OSS during the war — draws the attention of the CIA, and he’s recruited for “special” assignments in the Far East, pitting him against assorted Communists.

Hey! It was the sixties! Everyone was jumping on the spy bandwagon! There were Commies everywhere!

By the final book in the series, A Bullet for Your Dreams (1968), is going up against the Communist Chinese, trying to prevent the Vietnamese from getting their hands on a nuclear weapon. The book is noted for Danning’s sudden, about-face regarding the war.

The author, according to his bio pulled from the back of one of his paperbacks, was “a man of many skills. He is a professional bridge player and has met top-flight competition many times in international tournaments; he is also an amateur judo and jiu-jitsu enthusiast. Mr. Von Elsner is in the real estate business in Hilo, Hawaii, where he lives with his family.” He also wrote six thrillers about Jake Winkman, a professional card player who works part-time for the CIA.


Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.


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