JERRY KENNEALY – Polo Solo. Nick Polo #1. St. Martin’s Press, hardcover, 1987; paperback, February 1988.

   After posting an old review by Barry Gardner of Beggar’s Choice, the ninth in Jerry Kennealy’s Nick Polo series, I decided I had to read one for myself. There are eleven in total, and for whatever reason, I’d missed them all.

   This is the one I found, and I’m glad I did. Read it, that is. This was a good one. I don’t why the Nick Polo books have never been any better known than they have, which is as far as I know, is not at all.

   This one begins with Polo being freed from the prison he’s been in — there’s obviously a small story there — and his license restored by a political operative who has the clout to do so. Why? The mayor of San Francisco, female, has been photographed doing a porno movie, and she’s being blackmailed.

   It was a rigged up job, of course, but the publicity? Devastating. There are some mean streets in San Francisco, and with an opening like this one, you just know that Polo is going to go down some of them, and he does. He also runs across the path of one of the toughest and meanest villains in PI history, and as they say, Polo is lucky to get out of this one alive.

   He’s tough enough, though, and street savvy enough, that his coming out on top is totally believable. I enjoyed this one, and I’ll be looking out for more.