Reviewed by TONY BAER:


ED LACY – Moment of Untruth. Toussaint M. Moore #2. Lancer 73-554,  paperback original, 1964. Later printing, 1967.

   The phrase ‘the moment of truth’ comes from bullfighting. It refers to the moment that the matador makes the kill.

   Toussaint Moore is a retired detective. He’s a happily married postal worker. But his wife gets preggers and he’s strapped for cash. So he goes back to his old detective agency looking for some work to supplement his income.

   The old PI firm is happy to see him. They just got a call from a rich Mexican lady who wants to hire an American PI for $100 a day. Plus expenses, Touie should be able to pocket close to two grand for a couple of weeks work. She won’t say what the case is — but they figure its just a wandering husband or something.

   When Touie makes it to Mexico it turns out the case is much more sinister. The client’s husband has just been murdered by a poisonous snake planted in his bed. He’d been working on an expose of the most famous matador in Mexico. He found evidence that the matador was a fraud — but before he could publish his story, he was killed.

   Touie cracks the case and everything turns out copacetic. For those that survive.

   I like Toussaint Moore quite a bit — but the story is just okay.