Wanton Needs—Marshall Boyd
Coffee is like a bad woman, rough on the nerves, but good for the spirit—Falk McCoy
Wanton Needs, the fourth book by author Marshall Boyd of the Falk McCoy Mystery series, begins at the familiar Glades Hotel and then crisscrosses Miami by covering the cultures and countries that are the identity of the Magic City.
At Amantes, a supper club located on the second floor of the Glades Hotel, Garcia (owner of the hotel) and Mystel (Falk’s lover and proprietor of the supper club) are joined by Falk (the Glades hotel detective and private investigator) to speak with a hotel guest named, Juan Ortega. In a discussion over café con leche, Ortega, who is a diamond dealer, tells Falk that he has a surplus of cash from his business, specifically from his business partner. This cash flow raises a red flag in Ortega’s mind, but a suspicious sign to Falk. He tells Falk that his partner, Armando Arturo, may have surreptitious motives. Thus, the investigation begins in Miami’s cultural corners, leads to Cuba, Columbia, and finally back to Miami.
The storyline is about a diamond dealer doing wrong and Falk’s investigation to find the truth. The truth is subjected to Falk’s actions, and this detective shows no slowing down to uncover the mystery of the money. There are no lacunae in this story that entails, as Boyd wrote in his synopsis, ‘lies, lust and louts.’ Falk McCoy starts from the misinformation of whose stealing the money, the Haitian lady laying down her judgement, and the many criminals he encounters are just a few examples.
We are introduced to a new character named, ‘The Old Cuban’ who has a connection to Cuba and Falk’s lineage. Tom Buckley of the Miami Police Department and his ex-wife Jessie are familiar characters who return in Wanton Needs. Regardless if you’ve read Boyd’s first three novels, Death of a Dead Man, Faker, or Miami Lovers, although I encourage you to do so, he always provides the reader with a prolific character description.
These concise caffeinated chapters will fill your needs like strong shots of Café Cubano. Wanton Needs provides the play of power, the bloody side of crime, and the perils of being a private investigator. I compared Marshall Boyd’s novel, Death of a Dead Man to Wanton Needs. In that novel, Falk McCoy, who travelled to Philadelphia as part of his investigation, was reminiscent to a Mickey Spillane character while in the City of Brotherly Love. However, the Falk McCoy in Wanton Needs, who travelled to Cuba and Columbia, is all Marshall Boyd.
Marshall Boyd’s keen sense of the Miami culture and creative writing style combine for an intriguing story.
Wanton Needs is available at Amazon.com