Am Caulfield

Created by Alan Russell

Known for more hard-boiled fare, Alan Russell tried a switcheroo with a couple of more light-hearted mysteries featuring mild-mannered hotel dick AM CAULFIELD.

When we first meet Am, in 1994’s The Hotel Detective, “Assistant Director” of La Jolla’s swanky Hotel California Am has been informed by his boss, Raymond Krendrick, that his job duties will also include acting as “Security Director.” It’s a job Am isn’t exactly qualified to do, and it doesn’t help his confidence that he thinks his “promotion” may actually be punishment for some staff party shenanigans.

Then again, while he may look like a sunned-faded beach boy, with his youthful looks, shaggy blond hair and slacker demeanor, the former surfer does have a few cards up his sleeve: he’s a quick learner, he’s sly and crafty and he’s got the gift of gab—perfect for dealing with various whackadoodle guests and the always eccentric staff.

Among Am’s problems? Lingerie that’s disappeared from the room of a spectacularly well-endowed female guest, an unbalanced chef, way too many Bob Johnsons, a suicide (or was it an accident?), an overly ambitious intern, two hundred missing pastries, a sex swingers convention teetering out of control, a disappearing bellhop, and, of course, a few murders sprinkled around to keep things popping. Gotta have those.

And then theres that whale that just washed up on the beach in the second book in the series, The Fat Innkeeper (1995).

Unfortunately, The Fat Innkeeper would be the last one. But those looked for some breezy entertainment could do far worse than this amusing, gonzo-lite series.



Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.

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