NIGHT COVER, HARD LINE and LATE PAYMENTS - the Leroy Powder novels
Altogether there are three Leroy Powder novels: NIGHT COVER, HARD LINE and LATE PAYMENTS. Powder does also feature strongly in UNDERDOG, and occasionally in the last five Albert Samson novels and the Adele Buffington novel.
There are two short stories featuring him. “Late Shift,” is included in the RELUCTANT DETECTIVE collection and "911" appeared in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine. There is at least one more story on the cards.
Powder is not, by and large, a nice fella. Ironically, a real Indianapolis policeman once claimed that I based Powder on him in a story in the “Indianapolis Star.” Pity I’d never met the guy.
But some people like Powder – he was my mother’s favorite character of mine. A reviewer in “The New Yorker” said of NIGHT COVER, “In the several days during which Mr. Lewin allows us to share his long waking hours, Leroy Powder becomes exhilaratingly alive.” That’s good, right?
And HARD LINE won Japan's Maltese Falcon Society's award for "Best foreign novel" in 1987. The falcon I received is pictured on my home page.