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The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1)
The Monkey's Raincoat - Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1
Author: Robert Crais
When quiet Ellen Lang enters Elvis Cole's Disney-Deco office, she's lost something very valuable -- her husband and young son. The case seems simple enough, but Elvis isn't thrilled. Neither is his enigmatic partner and firepower Joe Pike. Their search down the seamy side of Hollywood's studio lots and sculptured lawns soon leads...  more »
ISBN-13: 9780553275858
ISBN-10: 0553275852
Publication Date: 3/1/1992
Pages: 237
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.

3.8 stars, based on 218 ratings
Publisher: Crimeline
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover
Members Wishing: 0
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1) on + 105 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 6
Stephen King's article in Entertainment Weekly "What a Guy Wants" introduced me to Robert Crais. King includes Crais with Lee Child, Michael Connelly, and Richard Stark as the epitomy of escapism and "manfiction" entertainment.

I enjoyed this first book in Crais' series. The characters were fun, the prose was quick, witty, and comedic (reminds me of Nelson Demille's John Corey), and the story was average.

3.5 stars out of 5
reviewed The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1) on + 3 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
I love smart alec detectives! Elvis Cole is a wonderful character and Joe Pike is a great sidekick. This isn't brain surgery but that is why I read............to relax, try to solve the murder and laugh out loud at Elvis' cracks.
cathyskye avatar reviewed The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1) on + 2171 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Genre: Private Investigator, #1 Elvis Cole mystery

First Line: "I'm sorry, Mr. Cole, this has nothing to do with you."

Several years ago people began mentioning Elvis Cole to me. Hmm...my last name, my mother's favorite singer.... I duly filed away the information. The people doing the mentioning probably thought I'd blown them off, to which I would reply: Just because I don't lay rubber the second you mention an author I might like doesn't mean I'm not paying attention. Sometimes I think part of my brain is an aquifer; it takes time for some of these authors to percolate down to the Do Something Level. I finally reached the Do Something Level with Elvis Cole, and now I've got a big smile on my face knowing what I've got in store for me.

Elvis Cole is a private investigator with a shadowy partner, Joe Pike. Joe isn't around all that much, which suits most people just fine. Let's face it-- the man scares people to death, and according to Elvis, "Pike thinks Clint Eastwood talks too much." Elvis has a life that suits him just fine. A Vietnam vet, his hero is Peter Pan, and he thinks very highly of Jiminy Cricket. (So do I. Jiminy taught me how to spell encyclopedia.) I also have to admit that the Pinocchio clock he has on his office wall fascinates me. Peter Pan...Jiminy Cricket...Pinocchio...when Ellen Lang walked into his office to hire him to find her missing husband and son, I knew that I was about to embark on a rather unusual investigation. I was led to a viper's den of criminals, drugs and sex, but I feared not, for Cole and Pike were with me.

By the time I finished, I had some new friends in Elvis and Joe. (I have a healthy respect for Joe, but he doesn't scare me. Yet.) The investigation itself isn't all that complex or unusual, but it moves quickly and taught me to pay attention to small clues and subtle nuances. The real reason why this book is such a standout rests squarely on the shoulders of Elvis Cole. It's as though, once he made it out of Vietnam in one piece and decided he wanted to be Peter Pan, his decision stripped away several layers of adult apathy and cynicism. This man can eat ice cream, watch an obnoxious customer torment the counter girl...and be incapable of pretending it isn't happening. When Mr. Obnoxious is persuaded to leave, Elvis leaves his business card with the girl. "If anyone ever bothers you...let me know."

And that's the strength of Elvis Cole--he cares. If that's what happens when a person decides to be Peter Pan, I say we should all start flapping our arms and taking flying lessons. In The Monkey's Raincoat, Robert Crais has set his stage with two superb characters in Cole and Pike, and I just happen to have Acts Two (Stalking the Angel) and Three (Lullaby Town) waiting in the wings.

Now if I could only find myself one of those Pinocchio clocks....

[A word of warning: anyone who has a low tolerance of violence may want to pass on this series.]
WMRod avatar reviewed The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1) on + 171 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Really enjoyed this book! Written in gritty guy-type cop talk (very true to form--my husband is a cop), it has many unexpected twists in the plot and the main characters are quite realistic. It's written with a perverted sense of humor (PI's and cops, remember) and a great feeling of Hollywood and LA in general. This book is a keeper for me, and I'm ordering more of the Elvis Cole series.
reviewed The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1) on + 2 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This was my first Robert Crais book, and after a rocky start, I really enjoyed it. It's a quirky, off-beat sense of humor, but I found myself wishing I wasn't finished with it, which is always a good sign. I've already picked up another book by this author, and am glad to have found another series I like. Great story, loved the characters.
Read All 34 Book Reviews of "The Monkeys Raincoat Elvis Cole and Joe Pike Bk 1"

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reviewed The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1) on + 3 more book reviews
Love reading books with Elvis Cole involved. I'm sure you will like this one also. I've read them all and hope Robert Crais keeps this character forever.
reviewed The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1) on + 83 more book reviews
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I hadn't read Mr. Crais's work before and liked it quite a lot. The book and characters reminded me a lot of Robert Parker's Spencer series. I will definately pursue this series.

Elvis was a pretty cool character and Joe Pike is interesting. I look forward to getting to know both of them better.
reviewed The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1) on
Loved this book. Robert Crais is definitely my new favorite author. Never thought his Elvis Cole and Joe Pike characters could even more interesting than Lee Childs' Jack Reacher!
reviewed The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1) on + 142 more book reviews
OK, let's run down the list. Wise-cracking LA private eye - check. Psychopathic lawless sidekick - check. Good friend on the local police force - check. Rescuing women and children from the clutches of an evil drug lord - check. So we've seen it all before. Old hat. Nothing original. So what makes reading Crais and his Elvis Cole series worthwhile? It's just plain good stuff - the heir apparent to Robert Parker and Elmore Leonard. If you're a fan of detective fiction, Robert Crais should be right there at the top of your list of must-read authors.
legz avatar reviewed The Monkey's Raincoat (Elvis Cole and Joe Pike, Bk 1) on + 449 more book reviews
A mystery written in the 80's introducing Elvis Cole & Joe Pike. Private investigators in California taking on a case that starts out as a missing husband and child and then gets to the seedier side of Hollywood studios and players. Add in a bullfighter and the mob and there's a fast paced mystery. I enjoyed a lot about this book, namely that there were no cell phones back then and legwork to gather information was a mainstay. I thought there was a little missing surrounding the partnership with Pike and his background. I'm assuming you have to continue to read the next book in the series


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