Praise

Bloody Murdock (1986)

“There is a great deal to enjoy in Bloody Murdock, especially for readers who crave quality craft in their mystery novels. Murdock is characterized very well and the level of expertise he demonstrates with all the tools of his gumshoe trade reveal just how much time and research author Robert J. Ray put in to composing the narrative. There are moments of suspense, terror, and even disgust throughout this novel handled skillfully with great descriptive language and smart, believable dialogue. There is no question that Bloody Murdock is indeed a bloody good read.”

—Michael Albani, The Portland Book Review

“The Austin scenes are brief, but if you are a fan of the hard-boiled but sensitive private eyes of Raymond Chandler and John D. Macdonald, you will feel at home with Ray.”

—American-Statesman, Austin, TX

“The story never stops and the lushly decadent southern California life was never more so.”

—Publishers Weekly

Murdock For Hire (1988)

“The Robert Ray talent unfolds with every book and Matt Murdock becomes more and more likable and his friends more lovable.”

—Amarillo Sunday News-Globe

“The central character is a rare find—tough, lonely, and incurably romantic.”

—Booklist
“The writing is clear and direct, there is plenty of action, and even a romance.”

—The New York Times Book Review

Dial “M” for Murdock (1988)

“Ray’s well-wrought consideration of what can happen to those overtaken by ‘greedy little-boy dreams’ will leave readers eager for the next Murdock adventure.”

—Publisher’s Weekly

“Fast, accomplished and slick.”

—Kirkus Reviews

Merry Christmas Murdock (1989)

“Merry Christmas Murdock delivers a knockout punch. It comes wrapped in action and violence. But inside its rough exterior there is warmth and humor. Much like the hard-boiled detective whose story it tells.”

—The Clarion-Ledger, Jackson, Mississippi

“Riveting. Private-eye Murdock is a sophisticated Mike Hammer, and Ray writes with the sardonic wit of a Mickey Spillane mixed with the insight of a Parker.”

—Tribune, South Bend, Indiana

“It may be the best Murdock yet, representing a stylistic plateau for Ray …. the reading experience is immensely pleasurable. Ray has become the proverbial incurable romantic and some of the turns of phrase in Merry Christmas are irresistible, the kind one wants to read more than once.”

—The Register, Orange County California

“It’s nicer still when there’s a decent yarn to spin, decently told, and this latest of the Matt Murdock capers is better than decent. The opening chapters are compelling …. This is an easy, unpretentious read. And Murdock is really awfully nice to be around.”

—The Drood Review of Mystery

“It’s a fast-moving, what-will-we-find-out-next story, with some likable characters and some you love to hate.”

—Chronicle, Houston, Texas

“What a find author Robert J. Ray is …. Perhaps best of all, Mr. Ray has the rare ability to build tension bit by bit by bit and keep much of this throughout the last two-thirds of the book, almost without pause …. A crackerjack piece of plotting and writing and unhesitatingly recommended.”

—Mystery News

“The style is punchy, the fast talk is zippy and the final shoot-out a honey …. I’ll be on the lookout for Robert Ray’s Matt Murdock in the future.”

—Trenton Times

“I liked the action-packed story line, the resiliency of the hero and the nifty, lucid prose.”

—Cape Cod Times, Hyannis, MA
“Robert Ray’s style is constant action leavened with antic laughter and surprising flashes of romance …. Murdock, a classic tough guy type, thrives in the land of gridlocked freeways and transplanted Midwesterners. He brashly confronts a host of foes, sorts through an avalanche of clues and finally prevails in a climatic shootout, Just another day for the irrepressible Murdock ….”

—St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“Fast-paced and easy to read, the adventure mystery won’t be disappointing to the folks who like to get away from it all for a few hours by using someone else’s imagination.”

—Press Register, Mobile, AL

“Murdock is as hard-boiled as a 10-minute egg.”

—The Plain Dealer

Murdock Cracks Ice (1992)

“Hard-nosed P.I. fare, with romance singeing the edges while our hero tries to toe the no-commitment line. Good reading, with frisky Chen and Hana definite scene-stealers.”

—Kirkus Reviews

“The novel, crammed with action, moves rapidly on Ray’s smooth prose and strong characterizations. Unlikely as it may be, Ray and Murdock make it believable.”

—San Antonio Express-News

“For all the violence of the drug scene, the lean, rich characterizations provide a break from the grim realities that feels very much like life, in which love and the companionship of others bring relief and hope. Then, too, the plot moves briskly, with a kind of spare clarity that reflects Murdock’s personality.”

—Cape Cod Times, Hyannis, MA

“Robert Ray has woven a complex web of crime and intrigue that is sure to snare the reader and keep him hooked. And Murdock’s chili recipe (page 8) is a good one, too!”

—Mostly Murder

“A welcome addition to the ever growing ranks of fine Seattle mysteries.”

—Seattle Times/Seattle Post-Intelligencer

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