Created by John McFetridge
“Why not, as a location scout I spend my life finding things that people believe are something else; a bar in Toronto is in New York, the front of a house propped up on an empty lot in Oshawa is a haunted house in Maine in 1955, half of downtown is the Suicide Squad’s Midway City.”
GORD STEWART is a sometime-location scout in Toronto (with a name like that, where else?) who supplements his income with a little private eye work for a local security company run by ex-cops, in Every City is Every Other City (2021), the first in what I hope will be a great new series.
At loose ends, single and forty-something, he’s crawled back to the endless suburbs from which he sprung to care for his widowed dad. But there isn’t much going on, and he agrees to look for a fellow crew member’s missing uncle, last seen walking into the Northern Ontario bush, somewhere up near Sudbury.
Sudbury? The bush? A protagonist called Gord? This sounds Canadian as fuck.
I’m pulling for this one because, well, the world needs more Canadian private eyes, and John just happens to be one of Canada’s best crime authors. Born in Montreal and a fellow refugee from the ‘Park, McFetridge is the author of the Toronto crime novels Let It Ride, Everybody Knows This is Nowhere and Dirty Sweet. He also wrote one of my favourite non-P.I. series, the Eddie Doherrty series, featuring the growing pains of a young, ambitious Montreal cop in the late sixties and seventies. John, a pal, has been threatening me with a P.I. series for years (a short story featuring P.I. Nat Lawson was just a tease), and this may be it.
- “On the drive over, I passed the Nickel City Inn and stopped. It was what I’d call real Canadian-looking, so unlikely to ever be used in a movie…”
— Every City is Every Other City
- “Every City is Every Other City may be the funniest story about making movies since 8½. It’s also shot through with observational wit while taking death, crime and their effects more seriously than most crime stories do… It’s a road story, a compelling and surprising mystery, it’s full of sly dialogue between the present and the past, its romantic subplot feels more real than such things usually do in crime novels, and its pop culture and pop technology references come across like natural parts of the story, rather than boxes the author ticked off.
I hope this gets made into a movie or a television series, with the Toronto scenes shot in New York and the Calgary scenes shot in Montana.”
— Peter Rozovsky
- Every City is Every Other City (2021) | Buy this book | Kindle it!
- John McFetridge
The author’s official blog.
- Murder in a Distinct Society
Montréal and Other Québec Eyes