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Goodnight, San Francisco

San Francisco radio news reporter Parker Atkins is an ex cop and an ex drunk who still has a taste for a mystery. A man who is dating out of his league and perhaps investigating a murder out of his league.

While one of the things I enjoyed most about Oliver's books is the fantastic description of Los Angeles and surrounding area in the late 1920's through the early 1940's, in this book, Oliver shows that his knowledge of California cities isn't limited to LA. He is just as knowledgeable about old San Francisco.

~Les Cook


Goodnight, San Francisco

If you like classic mystery movies with the likes of Humphrey Bogart (as Philip Marlowe in The Big Sleep), William Powell (as Nick Charles in The Thin Man), George Sanders (as Gay Falcon in The Falcon movie series), etc, who have all played "gum shoe" detectives (to coin a film noir phrase) in the aforementioned movies, then you'll enjoy Goodnight, San Francisco. The writer, H.P. Oliver, doesn't waste time with trivialities as do so many writers at the beginning of their books. The story grabs your attention within the first 4 pages and keeps you there as it continues to unfold. As you get deeper into the story you forget that you're reading and are instead watching a film noir mystery movie. So if you're a fan of the whodunit's then this book is for you.

~Lucy Ortiz


I like to read a good mystery that has side interests

I want to read every book H.P. Oliver writes—I have him on my Kindle wish list so I don’t miss his next eagerly anticipated book. I like to read a good mystery that has side interests and bits of fact that intrigue me and Mr. Oliver never disappoints.

I have read the Amazon synopsis of “Goodnight, San Francisco” and several of the reviews of this book and they give is a very good outline of the story. In fact, I don’t think I can improve the information without giving it away!

So, I will tell you why I enjoy reading Mr. Oliver’s books. First, he is a story teller that keeps the story interesting and moves you right along—with each book he becomes more comfortable with his characters and his writing style gives such pleasure to read. Secondly, he does not hide clues or leave details out—you work the story with him, which is something I enjoy. Thirdly, the detail of The City (or LA) is time-perfect and dead-on. Look up a location or event and it is well researched and in related in Technicolor. His words paint visuals for me, I can see where we are driving on the coast highway. Reading this book is like taking a little vacation. Last but not least, after finishing his book, I get to look forward to the next one!

~Lilly


A Superb Historical Mystery/Thriller Full of Tantalising Twists and Intriguing Hooks!

Parker Atkins, the main protagonist is a barely reformed drunk, an ex Los Angeles cop-turned-crime reporter and a general good guy who tends to lack self-esteem. In the opening chapter, Atkins heads home after visiting some friends in the Half Moon Bay area and unexpectedly witnesses a big black sedan deliberately going out of its way to hit a woman on the deserted pacific highway. Parker witnesses a violent and brutal death of a young socialite called, Elaine Doherty that he is personally and professionally keen to unravel. Not only does Parker think it would make a sensational story, he also wants to see the killer punished appropriately. Parker finds himself in the middle of a bizarre murder mystery that involves blackmail, kidnap and one of the most influential men in San Francisco and is forced to apply his detective and reporting skills against the element of surprise, tantalising twists and intriguing hooks in order to save his own life and of those he values the most.

H.P. Oliver effortlessly manages to pick the reader up and successfully transport them to back to San Francisco in the 1930s in this fast-paced historical thriller/mystery. Congratulations' Mr Oliver, Once again I fell in love with the deep descriptive landmarks, automobiles and the remarkable era of the early twentieth century and recommend the wonderful visualizations that depict this era on H.P. Oliver's website.

~C. R. Putsche


The Hits Just Keep Coming!

This story unfolds like a Pompeiin mosaic masterpiece. Tile after tile is carefully laid out until the picture materializes before you. This was a really fun excursion. Jump in your jalopy and come along for the ride!!!

~Diana S. Johnsonon


A Good Read for H.P. Oliver's Latest Novel

A fast paced mystery novel that reads easily and enjoyably. Oliver uses 1930's San Francisco as the historically accurate backdrop for former detective Atkins' effort to unravel the murder of a young socialite he witnessed on the Pacific Coast highway early one morning returning from a late night poker game. The dialogue and scenic descriptions are matched with some exciting plot and character development. This relatively short novel is highly recommended by this reader.

~Douglas Tedards


Check Out This Quality Historical Mystery

This was my first time reading a novel by Indie author H.P. Oliver, and I am happy to say it was an enjoyable experience. Oliver's writing is polished and professional. Judging from this book, I can say with confidence that he's an Indie author you can trust to produce quality mystery tales. And he has a great voice.

I really liked the character Dandy especially and missed her when she wasn't in the scenes. But Parker, the story's lead, was also a solid character who moved the tale along nicely with his narration. A former-cop-turned-radio-personality, he's also a recovering alcoholic. He finds himself involved in a murder mystery that takes the reader on many twists and turns, finally leading to a satisfying climax.

If you enjoy historical mystery, especially the variety that takes place in San Francisco in the 1930s, this is one I think you'd like.

~Carrie Sullivan


H. P. Oliver's Latest "Mystery in History"

I'm always excited to see a new release from H. P. Oliver; I really love his style of writing. His knowledge and love of California and its history are evident in his books, and it makes for the perfect settings for his mysteries.

This time we're following the investigation of a death that occurs in a traffic accident during the early morning hours on a deserted Highway 1. The investigator is a former law enforcement officer and recovering alcoholic who is now a radio reporter. The fact that our hero is less than perfect, but still likeable and believable, is much to the credit of our author. His talent for character development is supported by his use of accurate period dialogue that lends authenticity to the story.

There's always a good storyline in Oliver's books, and they keep you guessing until the end. As other reviewers have already mentioned, the descriptions of the times and places add depth to the narrative without slowing the pace, something I consider a real gift. By the time you reach the end of the book, you feel as though you've been right there with all the action taking place around you, and California in the mid-`30s feels very familiar.

There's no guessing that Oliver is one of my favorite writers. I certainly recommend this book to mystery lovers, and I'm waiting for Oliver's next one (which, according to his web site, will be out this fall!).

~Mississippi Ms


Fast-paced thriller in 1930's San Francisco

This book was an enjoyable page-turner, which I completed in just two sittings. The protagonist (Parker Atkins) sees a young woman struck and killed by a black Lincoln Zephyr on a stretch of highway beside the Pacific Ocean. Convinced her death was no accident, he applies wit, nerve, and social connections to deconstruct the mystery.

One of the most enjoyable aspects of this book, is how the author transports you to 1937 San Francisco. Contemporary news from the time period immerse you into a 1937 frame of mind. For instance, news about Amelia Earhart's progress, facts about the newly built Golden Gate Bridge, and playoff results for the New York Giants are woven into the narrative. As Atkins collects clues, we ride around San Francisco in his 1934 Ford; visiting a car dealership, a fire station, a general store, and other sites. We also visit his favorite restaurants, complete with 40-cent meals and hand-lettered menus.

While the historical details are immersive, they do not slow down the narrative drive. Chapters are briskly paced and keep you guessing right through the end of the book. I look forward to reading more of H.P. Oliver's books.

~Ken


He does it again!

"In the wee small hours, California Highway One north of Half Moon Bay is about as desolate as it gets.

That's the first sentence of Goodnight, San Francisco and from that point on I was lost in the story. The settings in H. P. Oliver's books are one reason I love them so much--he really makes an effort to make the perfect setting for his plots. In this case, it's California, mystery, and interesting characters . . . there really isn't another thing I could ask for at this point.

Oliver introduces us to a new hero, Parker Atkins, by way of a murder at 3:00 a.m. on Highway 1 in California. Parker witnesses the act, and spends a big part of the book trying to figure it all out. It's a good book, one with well-placed surprises written in a simple, clear style. There's some laughs too, believe it or not. And the details too! Wonderful! I've never read prose by another author that is so detailed without being boring. Yep, you might guess that I firmly believe that H. P. Oliver has done it again.

If you like well-written mysteries that make you think, you're going to love this.

~Sarah Owens


Goodnight, San Francisco is a fast paced story, an interesting mystery!

Goodnight, San Francisco continues H.P. Oliver's historical mysteries with a new lead character, a skilled former detective, brought down by personal flaws. Parker Atkins reinvented himself as a crime reporter, first in print, and now on the radio. His detective skills and radio personality are first rate while, personally, he has to continue to redevelop self-esteem and confidence in his worth as a person. In addition, he has a wealthy and gorgeous girlfriend he is certain he does not deserve. He needed to work a few things out along the way, while trying to solve a murder.\

I am often familiar with the locations in HPO's books, but 2014 familiar is far different from 1937 familiar. The roads have most of the same names and many landmarks are the same, but HPO places the reader's mental imagery back 77 years and expertly weaves actual historical events and geographical landmarks, as they were in 1937, into the mystery.

The Golden Gate and Bay Bridges are newly constructed. The piers of San Francisco are not overrun with tourists. The 101 had traffic jams - some things remain the same. Marin County then was significantly different than today, authentically quaint with rural small towns. Nevertheless, they had the Rose Bowl. Once again, several times, HPO sent me along the research path to find more details about the history he brought back to life.

I suggest a visit to the author's website, and checkout the Goodnight, San Francisco video. Listening to Parker Atkins broadcast was terrific - I found myself watching the speakers, just like occurred back in the era. Newscasts were certainly different back then, or perhaps, better. In addition, the Visualizations page supports the story through some imagery from the period, and I periodically flip over to the page every few chapters.

Goodnight, San Francisco is a fast paced story, an interesting mystery, with unforeseen turns as Atkins works to discover the truth, along with some assistance from his radio listeners, his superbly talented assistant and a Sheriff who decided to not arrest him.

~LVReader