Private Eye Confidential: Stories from a Real P.I. (Paperback)
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Literary Nonfiction. California Interest. At 29 years old, Mike Spencer moved from Florida back to the San Francisco Bay Area in late 1994. He realized that he wasn't going to achieve his dream job as a newspaper reporter for a major daily paper. He had a cheap apartment, a pantry of rice and beans and a $500 1970s Dodge Dart that worked, sometimes. One day he answered a help-wanted ad in the Oakland Tribune for a workers' compensation claims investigator. He never looked back, though he has thrashed many more cars in his two-decade career as a private dick.
Spencer's book is part memoir, part trove of lurid true cases. Spencer, who has a degree from UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism, tells his stories with a journalist's eye for facts and details. Tales of love, death, justice, deceit, comedy and vengeance spill from his short, accessible, and compelling book.
PRIVATE EYE CONFIDENTIAL displays both the best and worst of human nature. Private investigators see everything, and Spencer has encountered a man who wanted to prove his paternity from a frozen tampon, a man hidden from society while a large fortune awaited, and a grieving mother who wanted to make sure her tragedy didn't occur again. The book also contains cheating husbands, felonious wrestlers, some hidden Florida crime, and inveterate scammers.