If anyone erects a pantheon to mystery writers, I’m not sure Mickey would make the frieze, but there’s a soft spot in my heart for him anyway. And not for his prose (even though it’s a guilty pleasure.)
“I snapped the side of the rod across his jaw and laid the flesh opento the bone. I pounded his teeth back into his mouthwith the end of the barrel … and I took my own damn time aboutkicking him in the face. He smashed into the door and lay therebubbling. So I kicked him again and he stopped bubbling.”
No, it’s because of who he was. He once said in an interview, “I have no fans. You know what I got? Customers. And customers are your friends.” How do you not like that guy? Here’s what Robert Parker, author of the Spenser series of mysteries put it.
“I don’t think anyone, even in the solemnity of death, would argue that Mickey was a great writer, but he was a good guy and he was a successful writer and the combination ain’t bad.”
I once joked with a friend of mine that real tough guys don’t die, they just get so disgusted with getting old that they simply explode. (I was younger then.) But Mickey Spillane was a tough writer and it’s nice that he had a quiet end.
Anyway, so long Mickey. Sorry everybody turned Murrells Inlet into a touristy beach town on you, but is an awful nice spot.
Reuters – Mystery writer Mickey Spillane, who created the tough-guy private eye Mike Hammer, died on Monday at his South Carolina home at age 88, a funeral home official said.