Wednesday 5 April 2023

Dead Inside - Barry J Hutchinson - Dan Deadman Space Detective Book 2

Dead Inside
Dan Deadman Space Detective Book 2
ISBN 9781912767700

This is the fourth story I have read in the Space Team Universe, but I have read many others by the author. Several months before reading this I encountered the works of J.D. Kirk I also discovered that Kirk publishes children’s books as Barry Hutchison, and other adult fiction as Barry J. Hutchison. I have read 21 stories published under the Kirk Name and am now branching out to the ones under the Hutchinson names, this is the twelfth under that name. He is coming up on 200 books across the three pen names. If I had known that or I might not have picked up this first one. Friends call me a ‘completionist’ in that when I find an author I like, I try to read everything they have published. I have enjoyed all I have read from his pen and this one was no different. 

The description of this novel is:

“Dan Deadman is having one of those days.

After saving the grim and gritty alien city of Down Here from something big, mean and mind-bendingly horrible, Dan is looking forward to unwinding in the closest available bar. Annoyingly, the universe has other ideas.

Instead, Dan finds himself investigating a cheating husband, two horrible murders, and the potential enslavement of everyone in the galaxy. With his caseload stretching his woefully limited detective skills, his car in pieces, and the whole 'being dead' thing not doing him any favors, Dan has no choice but to ask his friends for help.

And that's when his problems really start.

Featuring motivational gangsters, predatory worms and a whole classroom full of defecating infants, "Dead Inside" is the second book in the Dan Deadman Space Detective Series, and the follow-up to the best-selling "Dial D for Deadman".”

When doing research for the Dial D for Deadman review I found on Barry’s site a reading order for the Space Team Universe Books and Short Stories:

2a. Space Team: The Holiday Special 
      (found in Space Team: A Lot of Weird Space Shizz)
3. Space Team: The Search for Splurt
4. Space Team: Song of the Space Siren
5. Space Team: The Guns of Nana Joan
6. Space Team: Return of the Dead Guy
7a. “Dead Men Don’t Get Paid” 
      (found in Space Team: A Lot of Weird Space Shizz)
8. Space Team: Planet of the Japes
9. “Dead Inside
10. Space Team: Time Titan of Tomorrow
11. “Dead in the Water”
12. Space Team: The King of Space Must Die!
13. Space Team: Sting of the Mustard Mines
14. Space Team: Sentienced to Death
15. Space Team: The Hunt for Reduk Topa
16. Konto Garr: Bounty Hunter and Occasional Babysitter

I have been intentionally jumping around Barry’s middle grade, young adult, and adult series. This was such a fun read. With a whole lot of slap stick humour, over the top antics. And at times it was laugh out loud funny. It reminds me of several series and authors, most of whom, I read when I was much younger. In a way this book and both series are like a jump back in time for me. The first to come to mind was Harry Harrison’s Bill the Galactic Hero series and his Stainless Steal Rat series, the next was Robert Asprin’s Phule’s Company Series. But for all the sense of a mash up of these other series there is something different about this offering, I absolutely love the concept of the Deadman series. And the universal translator that blocks swearing is very easy to decipher. As is obvious by the title Dan is dead, yea literally dead. He is trying to make a living as a Private Eye. Think Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer, except he is dead, not a zombie. And has a conscience even though he fights it often. Ollie (Oledol) is a woman he rescued while closing a portal to the malwhere a place of nightmares. She says she cannot remember anything and she is now more than a bit of a side kick. And man does she have some kick. And Artur his pint size leprechaunish friend. The characters are great. The humour is maybe a bit juvenal. Think Deadpool with an automatic filter to clean up the language. 

This story picks up shortly after the previous novel in the series. And there is a novella or short story in an anthology that falls between the two novels. In this one We find out more about Ollie, her powers, and even Dan’s own backstory. We also learn a little more about those who live in floating cities above. 

This book marks the 33rd offering from Hutchison I have read in the last 10 months, under the three names he publishes under. They have all been entertaining reads. Some have been excellent. Reading this as mentioned was like a throwback to stuff I read in my late teens and early twenties. It was a very fun read. I love the character of Dan Deadman and look forward to reading more of his stories in the standalone trilogy and in the larger Space Team Universe. A highly entertaining read I can recommend for mature readers who love the slap stick humour!    

Books by J.D. Kirk:

DCI Logan Series:

Robert Hoon Thrillers:

DI Heather Filson Series:

Contributed to:
Everyday Kindness: A Collection of Uplifting Tales to Brighten Your Day

Books as Barry J. Hutchison:
Dan Deadman Space Detective Series:

Space Team Series:
The Search for Splurt 
Song of the Space Siren 
The Guns of Nana Joan 
Return of the Dead Guy 
Planet of the Japes 
The Time Titan of Tomorrow 
The King of Space Must Die 
Sting of the Mustard Mines 
Sentienced to Death
The Hunt for Reduk Topa
A Lot of Weird Space Shizz: Collected Short Stories

Sidekicks Initiative Series:

The Bug Books Series:
Episode 1
Episode 2
Episode 3
Complete Season One

Other Books:

Children’s books as Barry Hutchison:
Invisible Fiends Series:
The Crowmaster 
Doc Mortis 
The Beast 
The Darkest Corners 

The Missing Remote of the Apocalypse
The Book of Doom 

Benjamin Blank Series:

Beaky Malone Series:

Generator Rex Series:

Living Ted Series:
Revenge of the Living Ted
Invasion of the Living Ted

Spectre Collectors Series:
Too Ghoul for School
A New York Nightmare!

Other works:

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