Having read many of the previous Mickey Spillane books, this one was a joy to read. The collaboration pictured in Complex 90 of the original Spillane and Max Allan Collins, author of many fascinating historical thrillers was perfect. The book was very entertaining and up to the minute, the minute being the year 1964.
Complex 90 was one of the books that had a release date in the 60’s but never was released. The author, Mickey Spillane showed the manuscript to Max Allen Collins in the 80’s and made the remark “Maybe we can do something with it someday.” Well the day has finally arrived and the book is being published. It will turn out to be one of the best installments in the life of Mike Hammer.
The narrative takes place in 1964 as PI Mike Hammer is working as a bodyguard, protecting a United States Senator who is on a fact-finding mission to the Soviet Union. This time period is during the middle of the Cold War and you just know that Mike Hammer, being in this part of the world is going to be a disaster to the USSR and Hammer. He is detained on espionage charges but breaks out of prison. During his escape he leaves a huge number of dead bodies in his wake. Arriving back in the US he finds that the Soviet Government want him back to stand trial and there are some in the US Government who would like to send him back. A friend that he has been working for in the past talks the US Government to send him back to New York where he has a PI practice. The good old USSR has agents in place as they want to ambush him and fly him back to Russia which makes things rather dicey for Mike and his assistant Velda. As Mike and Velda are dodging from the USSR agents to the Americans, Mike realizes that there may have been a set-up from the beginning. Complex 90 is a great one-day read with the tough Mickey Spillane and the calm Max Allen Collins. It’s a memorial to Mickey Spillane and, a collaboration that really works.
Hammer accompanies a conservative politician to Moscow on a fact-finding mission. Arrested and imprisoned by the KGB on a bogus charge; he quickly escapes, creating an international incident by getting into a fire fight with Russian agents.
On his stateside return, the government is none too happy with Hammer. Russia is insisting upon his return to stand charges, and various government agencies are following him. A question dogs our hero: why him? Why does Russia want him back, and why was he singled out to accompany the senator to Russia in the first place?