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2004 Book Award Reviews:

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J. Donald Coffin Memorial Book Award: Mark Bouton,
         District 2, for Max Conquers the Cosmos

         —visit book's web site

   In Max Conquers the Cosmos Mark Bouton gives us a gift—a fun read. He understands what many writers do not: "Less is more."
   Detective fiction is often known for its gritty dialogue and tough-guy action. Bouton includes the regular sharp banter and explosive action of detective/murder mystery genre, but also includes a sly humor and a genuine warmth in the persona of Max Austin, his retired FBI agent turned private investigator.
    Max Austin enjoys astronomy and has a cosmic view of life in general. He is hired by an attorney whose client is accused of killing her rich contractor husband at their mansion. Yet, Max is not your usual "tough guy" detective. Sometimes he seems to be blundering along, but there is professionalism behind his actions.
    Bouton moves the plot quickly and shares his knowledge and expertise without wasting words and creating superfluous pages. And he writes with wit and intelligence. 11/29/04

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