Mystery Man

Created by Colin Bateman

You want to hire a really good private eye?

Sorry, the detective agency you’re looking for has closed its doors for good. But maybe the unnamed owner of the No Alibis mystery bookstore next door, known only by his nickname of “MYSTERY MAN” can help you.

Oh, no… not really.

No, he’s not a detective. Not at all.

No, he’s actually a bit of a loser, if you want to be honest about it. He’s a shy, soft-spoken, cowardly hypochondriac who seems to rarely have a clue about anything but his beloved crime fiction and old detective films. In the first book, he even still lives with his mother, fer cryin’ out loud.

His mother!

But in his time he’s had to deal with missing leather trousers, aggressive graffitti artists, Nazis, suspicious plastic surgeons, assassins, errant terriers, MI5, dead gangsters and some truly deadly puns.

Like, The Prisoner of Brenda?


Things just seem to happen to whatsisname (we never do learn his name, by the way). Plus, he’s a bit of a shit magnet. But somehow, he seems to survive and crack the case, despite the fact the befuddled doofus rarely knows what’s going on.

If you’re running low on Hiaasen, try topping your tank up with some Bateman.

The author worked as a journalist in Ireland before becoming a full-time writer of comic capers. His first stab, Divorcing Jack (1995), which introduced hapless writer/amateur sleuth Dan Starkey, and won the Betty Trask Prize. Colin later adapted it into a film starring David Thewlis and Rachel Griffiths. Besides the Starkey and Mystery Man series, he’s also written several humorous children’s books and mystery standalones, including Reservoir Pups, Bring Me The Head Of Oliver Plunkett, Mohammed Maguire and Wild About Harry. In fact, in May 2010, Bateman won the Crimefest Last Laugh Award for the Mystery Man novel The Day of the Jack Russell.



Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.

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