Available on Amazon Kindle
Hammer and his side-kick, Jack Kane, investigate a South African diamond smuggling operation.
By E. B. Alston
Paperback 136 pages $12.00
"I enjoy unexpected twists and turns and the author threw me a curve with this one. I did not see the surprise coming!"
"I just finished Hammers latest adventure. What a great book. I felt like I was there, great descriptions and details. You must of either had to travel to the setting or you did a lot of research, either way ~ Great job!!"
Hammer Spade Fan
Hammer Spade, a single private investigator and his best friend, Jack Kane, have traveled to Africa to determine who is smuggling diamonds from a well-known firm. When they arrive, they find that surface appearances are deceiving.
Using a safari as a cover, Hammer and Jack display their marksmanship abilities, impress the natives, and overpower the opposing force. Solving the mystery of who is behind the diamond stealing becomes more and more difficult because for each puzzle solved, more obstacles are thrown their way.
Hammer Spade is a roll-with-the-punches kind of guy. In this novel, he is paired with an eclectic cast of characters. But whether he is dealing with an African bushman or a British aristocrat, Hammer’s common sense and quick wit allow him to deal with the current situation all the while maintaining his calm demeanor.
No matter how serious the circumstances, there is always humor to be found somewhere. Hammer and his friends never lacked for something to provide light entertainment. For example, zebra steaks sound quite tasty. However, after reading this book, I do not think I will ever be enticed into trying one!
This book is an enthralling read.
St. Joseph MO.
October 18, 2006
Cape Town had a beautiful skyline. We went to the offices of Cape Town Safaris where one of Kurt’s buddies led us into a conference room and invited us to take seats. A few minutes later, he returned with a tall bushman dressed in typical safari attire. His name was Mandla Mobotke, an aristocratic looking Zulu with a regal bearing and a serious expression. He didn’t smile when we shook his hand. Kurt got down to details after his friend left us alone.
“Mandla, did Robert tell you what this is about?” Kurt asked.
“Robert say this hush-hush. That all he say.”
“We’re going after smugglers.”
Mandla grunted something un-intelligible.
“You will guide Mr. Spade,” Kurt pointed to me, “and his friend in the Vaal area to wherever the trail takes them.”
“I tracker, not guide,” Mandla informed us.
“But you are familiar with the area?”
“I familiar with all my homeland.”
“Mr. Spade and his friend are unfamiliar with our wildlife. You must keep them out of trouble.”
“I keep everybody out of trouble.”
“That will be your responsibility.”
“Can’t you cook?”
“I not cook. You need cook.”
“Can you find one?”
“I find one. What pay?”
“Ten rand very good. Who carry gear?”
“We have a lorry.”
“Who unload lorry and load lorry?”
“Can’t you and the cook unload the lorry?”
“I not unload lorry. Cook cook, not lorry loader.”
Kurt sighed. “Can you get a baggage handler?”
“I get baggage handler. How much?”
“Eight rand good. We eat store meat or he kill meat?” He pointed at me.
“He’ll have provisions. But it’s okay to kill fresh meat.”
“I not like store meat. I want fresh meat.”
“Okay, he’ll kill the game that you point out to him.”
“We need butcher.”
“Can’t the cook butcher what Mr. Spade kills?”
“Cook cook. Not butcher. I not butcher. Need good butcher.”
Kurt sighed again. “Can you find a butcher?”
“Find butcher. How much?”
“Eight rand not good. Need nine rand to get good butcher.”
“Nine rand is okay,” Kurt agreed resignedly. “Anybody else?”
“Cook, baggage man and butcher plenty. When we start?”
“September tenth good. Where we start?”
“Danielskuil at noon.”
“Danielskuil good. Mandla see you September ten.”
Mandla rose and left without another word.
“I have hired his wife or mistress to cook, his brother or a cousin to load and unload and his father or grandfather to butcher what you kill for them to eat,” Kurt said. “I hope you and your friend enjoy hunting. You’ll have a tribe to feed.”
I thought it was rather funny. “I guess we’ll track the smugglers in our spare time.”
Kurt didn’t find that at all amusing. “That is the way it is in Africa. Get used to it.”
“We’d better get Jack a hunting rifle.”
“We have an old Mauser square-bridge with express sights in 375 H&H that he can use. That way you’ll have something big in case you get in trouble with a lion or a cape buffalo.”
The next day when I left, Kurt gave me a dog-eared copy of Bell of Africa by W. D. M. Bell, the famous elephant hunter from the early nineteen hundreds.
Alonia met me at the airport and drove me to her home for our reunion. Life was good.
This Book is available in the United Kingdom
through Bertram Books