Stephen Marlowe

Stephen Marlowe

Stephen Marlowe (1928-2008) was the author of more than fifty novels, including nearly two dozen featuring globe-trotting private eye Chester Drum. Born Milton Lesser, he was raised in Brooklyn and attended the College of William and Mary. After several years writing science fiction under his given name, he legally adopted the pen name Stephen Marlowe, and began focusing on Chester Drum, the Washington-based private detective who first appeared in The Second Longest Night (1955). 

Although a private detective in the mold of Philip Marlowe, Drum was distinguished by his jet-setting lifestyle, which carried him across the globe, from Mecca to South America. These espionage-tinged stories won Marlowe acclaim, and he produced more than one a year before ending the series in 1968. After spending the 1970’s writing suspense novels like The Summit (1970) and The Cawthorn Journals (1975), Marlowe turned to historical fiction. He lived much of his life abroad, in Switzerland, Spain and France, and died in Virginia in 2008.

“A cult author for lovers of noir fiction.” - Mónica Calvo-Pascual, author of Chaos and Madness

“Marlowe’s buoyant skill and credibility lie in the way he has put breath into [his] characters.” - Atlanta Journal Constitution

“A great pulpster . . . always one of my favorites.” - Ed Gorman, author of The Poker Club

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