When Sam Kornberg’s wife, Lala, walks out on him, he’s an unemployed used-book store clerk and failed experimental novelist with a broken heart. Desperate to win her back, he takes a job as assistant detective to the enigmatic Solar Lonsky, a private eye who might be an eccentric and morbid genius or just a morbidly obese madman.
It’s a simple tail job, following a beautiful and mysterious lady around L.A., but Sam soon finds himself helplessly falling for his quarry and hopelessly entangled in a murder case involving Satanists, succubi, underground filmmakers, Hollywood bigshots, Mexican shootouts, video-store geekery, and sexy doppelgangers from beyond the grave. A case that highlights the risks of hardcore reading and mourns the death of the novel—or perhaps just the decline of Western civilization.
Mystery Girl is a thriller about the dangers of marriage and a detective story about the unsolvable mysteries of love, art, and other people.
About the Author
David Gordon was born in New York City. He attended Sarah Lawrence College and holds an MA in English and comparative literature and an MFA in writing, both from Columbia University. His first novel, The Serialist, won the VCU Cabell First Novel Award and was a finalist for an Edgar Award. It was also the first novel to win all three major foreign mystery awards in Japan, where it is currently being made into a film. His stories have appeared in the Paris Review, Fence, and elsewhere. He has worked in film, fashion, publishing, and pornography.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Mys­tery Girl by David Gor­don is a noir novel set in Cal­i­for­nia. Mr Gordon's first novel, The Seri­al­ist, won the VCU/Cabell First Novel Award and was a final­ist for an Edgar Award. Sam Korn­berg lives in L.A., his mar­riage is falling apart and it looks like he'll never be the nov­el­ist he dreamed of being. Look­ing for any job he might be qual­ify for , Sam gets a job as an assis­tant (he spe­cial­izes in being an "assis­tant") detec­tive to Solar Lonsky. Sam's first assign­ment is to track a mys­te­ri­ous woman who trig­gers the adven­ture his about to take involv­ing shootouts, mis­taken iden­ti­ties, insane asy­lums and lots of movie talk in a video store. Mys­tery Girl by David Gor­don is def­i­nitely a men’s novel full of self doubt, awk­ward­ness, porn, manly movie talk and Jackie Chan. The book is both funny and sad, easy to read but cer­tainly not fluff. The novel is much like real life, when things which are insignif­i­cant to oth­ers seem to be insur­mount­able objects in your life, and sub­jects which are impor­tant to you are mean­ing­less to most. The style of the book took me a lit­tle time to get used to, it’s frank but with a lot of sim­i­les to make sure you know you’re read­ing a noir novel. How­ever, I did enjoy the humor, the char­ac­ters as well as the story. The author pays homage to the movie indus­try; the nar­ra­tor is a nov­el­ist so it was nice to read how movies influ­ence writ­ers and not nec­es­sar­ily the other way around. The char­ac­ters were inter­est­ing, self-deprecating and hon­est. I found the idea of a failed writer who thinks he’s right (his sto­ries have no plot) while every­one else is wrong to be funny and amusing. There is no doubt that Mr. Gor­don is a very tal­ented writer, while the book has a few ups and downs, over­all I really liked the writ­ing and the story.