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Chercover, Sean

Chercover, Sean


Married; children: one. Education: Columbia College, Chicago, IL, B.A., 1991.


E-mail—[email protected]


Writer. Has worked as a journalist, private investigator in New Orleans, video editor, scuba diver, nightclub magician, encyclopedia salesman, waiter, car-jockey, and truck driver.


Big City, Bad Blood, William Morrow (New York, NY), 2007.

Also author of screenplay Scared Money. Author and coproducer of a radio adaptation of D.O.A. (syndicated). Also author of scripts for children's shows, including Once upon a Hamster. Contributor to periodicals, including MediaScene, Diver, La Plongee, Solutions Quarterly, Cinema Canada, IDG's Publish, and Crimespree. Columnist, (online publication for media professionals).


Former private investigator Sean Chercover's debut novel, Big City, Bad Blood, ‘is a multi-layered tapestry of new and old Chicago, with colorful detail of Dudgeon's downtown office overlooking the Wabash L tracks, the gang graffiti in the Chicago police holding rooms at Harrison and Kedzie, the new face of Rush Street and the old,’ wrote Scott Jacobs in the Chicago Sun-Times. ‘And because a detective's got to eat, Chercover threads the needle between a succession of landmark Chicago restaurants—Como Inn, Blackie's, El Jardin, Pearl's Place and Manny's Delicatessen—to set his narrative in a Chicago every bit as real as his memory of it.’ ‘Chercover's passion for the city he loves and his laments for the city it is becoming,’ concluded K. Robert Einarson in Spinetingler Magazine, ‘is evident throughout the book."

Chercover draws on his own experiences to present the story of Ray Dudgeon, a former reporter turned private investigator, who finds himself working for a Hollywood producer who has been threatened by a man pretending to be part of Chicago's premier boss's mob. However, as the author points out in an interview with Russel McLean of Crime Scene Scotland, the life of a real PI is quite different from that of the fictional heroes. ‘Yes,’ Chercover told McLean, ‘there is a huge gulf between the fictional P.I. and the real deal. And in many ways, there should be. These books are fiction, after all. Your first obligation is to the story, not to portraying reality.’ ‘I think when we talk about wanting books to be realistic,’ he concluded, ‘we really mean that we want them to be plausible."

Critics celebrated Chercover's initial contribution to the ‘hard-boiled’ genre of detective fiction. ‘The author's considerable storytelling and characterization gifts,’ a Publishers Weekly reviewer opined, ‘compare favorably with those of Loren D. Estleman’ and other crime-fiction writers. ‘Dudgeon's darkness,’ stated a Kirkus Reviews contributor, ‘adds welcome depth and complexity to this hard-boiled debut, a likely series kickoff."



Books, January 14, 2007, Dick Adler, review of Big City, Bad Blood, p. 8.

Chicago Sun-Times, March 4, 2007, Scott Jacobs, ‘Undercover 101."

Kirkus Reviews, November 15, 2006, review of Big City, Bad Blood, p. 1153.

Publishers Weekly, November 6, 2006, review of Big City, Bad Blood, p. 37.


Crime Scene Scotland, (September 30, 2007), Russel McLean, interview with Sean Chercover.

Sean Chercover Home Page, (September 30, 2007), author biography.

Spinetingler Magazine, (September 30, 2007), J.B. Thompson, interview with Sean Chercover, and K. Robert Einarson, review of Big City, Bad Blood.

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