Umbrella Man (Jack Flippo Mysteries)

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9780399145032: Umbrella Man (Jack Flippo Mysteries)

Marty Dufrain, owner of a black-and-white film of the Kennedy assassination, leads Jack Flippo on a perilous quest to find out the truth about Kennedy's murder, a trail that brings him face to face with a homicidal con man and an ailing ex-killer with some less-than-bright sons-in-law. By the author of Big Town.

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Jack Flippo has what might be called an anti-Midas touch: everything he puts his hands on turns to crap. Jack used to be an assistant district attorney in Dallas, but he screwed up so badly (as chronicled in three funny, creepy books--Big Town, Dreamboat, and 96 Tears) that he's been forced to earn his living working as a downscale private detective. At the start of this fourth adventure, Jack is temporarily back in the legal profession--working for a decidedly boring law firm. We know it's only a matter of time though before he'll be back on the meaner streets of Dallas, digging up dirt for a weird assortment of clients.

This time, the action involves the grubby cottage industries that have sprung up in the decades following the JFK assassination. There's the Conspiracy Institute, which "took up a small corner of a forgotten brick eight-story near the Greyhound Station"; and the Grassy Knoll Experience, a tour of the area in a 1963 Lincoln convertible limo driven by an increasingly desperate ex-cop named Eddie Nickles. Jack is thrust into this world after hearing about a legendary 30-second piece of movie film that supposedly shows there was a second gunman. His mission is to prove the existence of the film. He is helped by his supremely strange, artist ladyfriend Lola. They struggle with several stumbling but definitely dangerous villains along the way. And, as usual, journalist Doug Swanson manages to shine a light on the seedy parts of Dallas that are rarely written about. --Dick Adler

About the Author:

Doug Swanson is a Pulitzer-nominated journalist for The Dallas Morning News currently enjoying a fellowship at Stanford University. The author of three other Jack Flippo mysteries, Big Town, Dreamboat, and 96 Tears, he lives in Dallas, Texas, and Palo Alto, California.

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