The Golden Girl and All

Hardman, Book 3
Narrated by: Shawn Compton
Series: Hardman Series, Book 3
Length: 4 hrs and 55 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (13 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

“Like Chandler and Hammett before him, Dennis was trying to do something different with what was thought of as throwaway literature.” (Joe R. Lansdale, from his introduction) 

Jim Hardman was a mediocre Atlanta cop until he was wrongly accused of corruption and thrown off the force. Now he works as an unlicensed PI, trouble-shooter, and bodyguard...often partnered with his drinking buddy Hump Evans, a black ex-NFL player who supports his playboy lifestyle by working as hired muscle. 

In The Golden Girl and All, Hardman is hired to find Peggy Holt, a drug dealer, stripper, and serial seductress who has kidnapped her six-year-old daughter from her ex-husband. Peggy has disappeared into an Atlanta underworld populated by the dirty cops, crooked lawyers, and violent mobsters that she's bedded and betrayed...and who keep coming back for more. 

The only way Hardman can find her is to follow the trail of corpses that she's left in her wake without becoming one himself.

©2018 Adventures in Television (P)2019 Adventures in Television, Inc.
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A great from the seventies

The Golden Girl and All: Hardman, Book 3.. A great listen from the seventies, not all from that era was good but the Hardman series is a superb example of the time.
Action packed and gripping, the violence and there is surprisingly little is not graphic as in today's novels. The language again there isn't much by today's standards but it is of ti's time and not politically correct.
Can be read as a stand alone novel.
Narration is excellent and Shawn Compton makes you feel as if you were there.
I was given a free copy of this audiobook at my own request, and voluntarily leave this review.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A Satisfying Roller Coaster Read

Though not as good (in my opinion) as the previous book in the series, this offerring is certainly a joy ride. Like a roller coaster, once you begin reading, the ride begins and does not let up until the conclusion, keeping this reader attuned to my Audible book.

The plot has Hardman hired by a lawyer to locate a missing child, part of a custody action between parents. As usual he has the assistance of his number two man, Hump, and off they go. Soon they find the little girl is part of a bigger plot having to do with drug smuggling and selling.

The bonus to this audio-book is narrator Shawn Compton. If the story is a roller coaster, then he is the brace buckle, that keeps the reader/listener tightly in his seat. Compton's taught, terse, lightly animated reading really helps to verbally represent the tension within the plot. Rarely does a narrator add to the enjoyment of a book, but Shawn Compton continues to do that here.

Though not my favorite of the three I have read in the series, it is still worth reading/listening to this fine hard boiled mystery.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Another Fun Ride

I received this book for free. I am voluntarily posting this review and all opinions expressed herein are my own.

This is the third book in the Hardman series. It is a standalone [no cliffhamger ending]. It's not necessary to have read any of the prior books in the series, but To fully enjoy this series you should start at the beginning .

Here, Hardman takes an easy case to find a missing child but nothing is quite what it seems. The child's mother seems to be an Helen of Troy like character to men. And at the same time, Hardman's own relationship is somewhat falling apart.

The action is non stop. Be warned this was written in the 70s and contains language and viewpoints from that era. I am thoroughly enjoying this series and would recommend.

The narrator, Shawn Compton, perfectly embodies this series.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Does not disappoint!!!!

I could not wait to begin this book. I downloaded it yesterday afternoon and by bedtime, the thrill ride was over and I was hungry for another turn.

Even with this book set in the early 70's, I found myself engrossed in Hardman and Hump's delirious adventures to track down a kidnapped girl. As per usual with this series, nothing is as it seems. From the enigmatic opening to the closing scene in Hardman's home, this listen was non-stop. I won't give anything away but come prepared.

Compton continues to be his intensely wonderful self in narrating this great series. Love it!!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good But Not Great

Any book that starts out with a warning about the time it was originally written giving you a warning about the content within it is going to be a doozy. Thankfully, that warning helped me enjoy the book more. It also explained that this was a much older book that was just being released on audio (which I wouldn’t have known going into it due to the great new cover art).

The Golden Girl and All is, what I believe to be the third book in the Hardman series and I could tell a little bit that I was being thrown into an already built up character. The era that this book was written is similar to the Fletch books and there were some themes that carried over from the Fletch series but it was definitely missing some of the things that Fletch got right.

The story itself is that Hardman is hired to find the daughter of his client who they believe has been taken by her other parent. It looked and felt like an open and shut case but once Hardman dug in a bit he quickly realized that there was a lot more going on. The story takes him to interesting places and he has to chat with some colorful characters.

There was even a twist point where I was pretty sure the book was over but I was wrong – there was a major surprise there that caught me off guard (that I enjoyed). I thought it added another depth to the story that it was missing up until that point.

Overall, I thought that Shawn Compton breathed life into an old story. I enjoyed it and it was a fast read but it wasn’t my favorite mystery/detective novel I’ve ever read. It was good at parts and felt like there was filler for some others. I would probably check out at least one more book in the series before I made up my mind though. It’s funny because I want to call this book old-school but that is exactly what it is. It wouldn’t be insulting since it was written 40 years ago.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Kidnapped

This is another in the series about Jim Hardman, an Atlanta ex cop turned PI who works with his black partner Hump an ex NFL player. In this novel, Hardman is hired by lawyer Jack Smathers for his client, Edward Simpson, to find his 6 year old daughter Mary Anne kidnapped by her mother and Simpson's ex wife. Simpson lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and his ex wife Margaret is believed to be living somewhere in Atlanta Georgia. Thinking this is a quick and easy case and taking it mostly because he is bored with nothing else to do, Hardman soon learns that yes, the ex wife is living in Atlanta, but she goes by the name Peggy Holt, and she seems to have a strange hold over all the men she has been in contact with. Rather than the quick and simple case, Hardman soon learns that it is anything but simple easy when he find Peggy Holt's new boyfriend Atlanta Patrolman dead in the apartment where they were living. Hardman does manage to rescue the girl only to lose her again. Excellent book, possibly a little slow in the beginning. The book was originally written in 1974, and it's always interesting to reminisce about those simpler days without cell phones, let alone smart phones and computers. I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Dark Underground Atlanta

I received this from AudiobookBoom in exchange for an honest review.

This was about a 3-star read until the last quarter of the book, when the tension and excitement ramped up significantly. Both Hardman and Hump are under the gun, and a little girl's life is at risk.

We learn a lot about Jim Hardman's morals in this one, too: not everything he does is about money, and he appears to have a soft spot when it comes to innocent children in the dark world of Underground Atlanta.

More Hardman, please!