Milan Jacovich Books

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Milan Jacovich is the name given to a series of crime fiction novels written by Les Roberts and which feature a witty private investigator doing what he can to help those who seek his services.

Order of Milan Jacovich Series

#ReadTitlePublishedDetails
1Pepper Pike1988Description / Buy
2Full Cleveland1989Description / Buy
3Deep Shaker1991Description / Buy
4The Cleveland Connection1993Description / Buy
5The Lake Effect1994Description / Buy
6The Duke Of Cleveland1995Description / Buy
7Collision Bend1996Description / Buy
8The Cleveland Local1997Description / Buy
9A Shoot in Cleveland1998Description / Buy
10The Best-Kept Secret1999Description / Buy
11The Indian Sign2000Description / Buy
12The Dutch2001Description / Buy
13The Irish Sports Pages2002Description / Buy
14King of the Holly Hop2008Description / Buy
15The Cleveland Creep2011Description / Buy
16Whiskey Island2012Description / Buy
17Win, Place, or Die2013Description / Buy
18The Ashtabula Hat Trick2015Description / Buy
19Speaking of Murder2018Description / Buy
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Les Roberts is an American author who was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. He lived a rather ordinary life growing up as his father was a dentist and his mother was a homemaker for them. While his beginning was rather ordinary, his writing career would turn out to be anything but. He began a career as an actor as a young man and did summer stock in Taos, New Mexico. He would then move to New York and while he was working as an actor, it was writing that started to take over his life. He would write on classic television such as Candid Camera and the Jackie Gleason Show.

The success writing television would bring Les to Hollywood, California where he worked as a producer on Hollywood Squares. His carer would then have him writing and producing television for much of his life from there, writing for such hit shows as The Lucy Shows, The Andy Griffith Show, and The Man From Uncle.

He’d make his way to Cleveland in the 90s to create a lottery game show called Cash Explosion Double Play. While he moved other places after this, he considered Cleveland to be the place he felt most comfortable and eventually moved there for good in 1990.

He’s written over 20 novels and despite his Chicago upbringing, he is beloved in Cleveland thanks to the creation of his Milan Jacovich character, the Slovenian Detective out of Cleveland. Cleveland is home and the place he refers to as his spiritual home as well.

The Milan Jacovich novels began publication in 1988 with Pepper Mike. The first novel in the series, Pepper Mike takes readers to Cleveland. There they meet Milan Jacovich, a PI that a high-powered advertising executive hires to protect him.

Jacovich goes to Richard Amber’s place of residence with the intention of doing just that. But he calls it a day when he gets there and Amber is nowhere to be found. It isn’t until Amber’s wife calls Jacovich and asks him to find her husband, who is now officially missing, that Jacovich begins to smell a rat.

His investigation takes Jacovich into the heights of wealth and depths of poverty in Cleveland, this as he faces off against mobsters and thugs.

It is during his harrowing journey to unravel Amber’s disappearance that readers begin to understand the nature of Jacovich. A former football player and ex-cop, Milan Jacovich is quite the larger man, larger than the average PI.

A Vietnam veteran with a master’s degree and blue-collar tastes, Jacovich is divorced and has only recently begun to dip his toes into the dating pool. Even though he mimics the traits of the average crime fiction PI on the outside, what with his witty persona, loner attitude and impressive deductive skills, Les Roberts, the author, elevates his hero above the competition by making Milan Jacovich so shockingly average.

Jacovich isn’t necessarily an outstanding detective. You won’t find him solving complicated mysteries with little more than the power of his mind. The PI simply does the work; he talks to people, collects clues and keeps knocking on doors until he yields some results.

It helps his case that the hero is so likable. Readers have praised Les Roberts for presenting Cleveland in the 1990s in an accurate manner. They specifically like the fact that he represents the mannerisms of the people so well, not to mention the wealth disparity and the language.

Female readers have also shown an appreciation for Les Robert’s penchant for writing realistic, respectable female characters that do not only exist to feed Milan Jacovich’s lusts and desires.

Jacovich, for his part, always respects the women he encounters in his stories. Each new Milan Jacovich novel finds the PI dealing with a new case.

Milan Jacovich Awards

The first novel in this series received an Anthony Award nomination (Best Novel) in 1989. Les Roberts also received a Shamus Award nomination for Lake Effect in 1995.

The Milan Jacovich books are relatively standard crime fiction novels featuring an outstanding male lead, a litany of curious supporting characters and a memorable setting, with some of the best titles in the series including:

Deep Shaker: Milan Jacovich is a great PI but he is an even better friend. So when a friend’s son starts selling drugs, he does not hesitate to ask Milan for help. The detective immediately jumps on the trail of the boy’s connections.

His work drags him into the seedy world of the narcotics business where he encounters murder and clashes with a realtor called Christmas. But Milan’s biggest challenge will be the drug gang he comes across, a group known more for their savagery than anything else.

The Cleveland Connection: Milan Jacovich is a Slovenian PI in Cleveland that generally steers clear of the conflict between the Serbs and Croats. So he isn’t too enthused to throw himself into the case of a young woman whose Serbian grandfather has gone missing.

In trying to locate the old man, Milan’s trail leads him to a mob hitman that just showed up in town.

Other Book Series You May Like

The “Easy Rawlins” Series by Walter Mosley is another good one to check out. These books from the 1940s are bestselling mysteries that feature Ezekiel Rawlins, an African American Hard Boiled detective who fought in World War II and now operates out of Los Angeles.

The cases Rawlins investigates typically feature racial inequalities and social injustices. The majority of his clients are persons of color.

You may also enjoy the “Derek Strange and Terry Quinn” Series by George Pelecanos. Derek Strange is a successful black gentleman that was once a cop. Terry Quinn is white and barely holding on. He was also once a police officer. Derek and Terry work as Private Detectives in Washington DC.

What Is The Next Book in The Milan Jacovich Series?

There doesn't seem to be an upcoming book in The Milan Jacovich Series. The newest book is Speaking of Murder and was released on June, 4th 2018.

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1 thought on “Milan Jacovich”

  1. Milan Jacovich character, the Slovenian Detective out of Cleveland. Now that’s a tagline if I’ve ever heard one.

    Middle America is always a hit-or-miss setting for books, but Roberts frames it perfectly. The books make you feel like you were a Cleveland local yourself.

    Although not necessary, I suggest reading the books in order as there are frequently references to past characters and plot points. The books do not disappoint and I will continue reading them.

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