C.T. Ferguson

 Created by Tom Fowler

I‘m generally not a big fan of these “instant series,” where self-publishers dump a quickly written series of books on us from out of nowhere–there’s no way all these guys (and they are legion) all have a stack of old manuscripts mouldering away in a box somewhere that they’ve accumulated over the years that they suddenly decide to dump onto the market. But it’s not their prolificacy I mind–there are numerous prolific writers out there whose work I admire, from the pulps right up to latter day faves like modern day pulpster Robert Randisi and the late, great Robert B. Parker, all of whom were able to crank out exciting, well-written books and stories full of action, wit, and vivid colour.

No, it’s these modern-day digital desperadoes who can apparently only thrive in the Amazonian ecosystem that set my teeth on edge. Thanks to the ease of publishing digitally, where no book is too bad to be rejected, we’re subjected to a seemingly endless stream of spat-out generic private eye books that contain all the action, “witty quips” and vivid colour of a glass of lukewarm spit. With their boring covers and boring contents, I wonder if these things are even written, or if some outfit has a computer program–or a bullpen of not-very-good ghost writers–that just churns them out. Sure as hell nobody’s wasting much time editing them.

To his credit, Tom Fowler’s C.T. FERGUSON series at least tries a little harder than the usual Shell Scott/Magnum P.I. male mid-life crisis wish-fulfillment series. Even the otherwise predictable cover design sports a few small graphic flourishes rarely seen on these types of instant series.

After serving time in a Hong Kong prison forwording against the Chinese government, hacker Ferguson is released and returns stateside to Baltimore, where he sets up shop as a private investigator, albeit one with a very particular skill set.


Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.

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