In to the early 90s I was a faithful reader of The Ben Perkins mysteries written by Rob Kantner. It was the fact that Perkins was a Detroit metro area based PI that first got my attention, it was the mostly medium boiled tone of the books that kept me reading. Kantner was right there in that space between the cozies and the Stark. Kantner stopped writing mysteries somewhere along the way, and I slowed way down reading them for a couple of years.
When I got back into reading Crime Fiction Kantner was an author that I wanted to catch up with but alas there weren't any new books for me to pick up. Ok, I figured it would be worth while to take a look at the ones that I had read in my late teens and early twenties, only I parted with them somewhere along the way-- so I checked the library, and that where I came across Trouble is What I do!
The book is a collection of short stories featuring Ben Perkins and parts of his cast of characters. I've read about half the stories, and they tend to hold up pretty well. "The Eye Went By" and "The Forever Trip" are two of my favorites so far. I like that Perkins is a filled out character, I like the feel of place that the stories have. I grew up not only in the time that most of these are set, but in the far edge of the physical setting. Safe and sound (for the most part) in Ann Arbor, while the murder cities of Detroit lay to the east and Flint (which was the murder capital of the country until DC took over) to the north-- filling our local news with chaos, death and despair. It's through this world that Perkins rides and tries to set things right.