One of the best known of the new breed of female private detectives who popped up in the late seventies/early eighties was V.I. Warshawski, a Chicago private eye specializing in corporate skullduggery.
V.I. is very proud of her Italian-Polish roots and her working class background, and seems to take particular delight in going after fat cats. She's got an office in the Loop, complete with the El rattling past every few minutes.
She packs a gun in her purse, and she'll use it if she has to. She'll duke it up if she has to, and she doesn't take any nonsense, especially from men. She lives in the real world and that's the way she wants it. She's committed, principled, and uncompromising, and a very welcome addition to the ranks of the genre.
V.I's can be pretty cutting and she's about as unapologetically in-your-face as series private eyes come these days and it's no coincidence that several people have drawn parallels between V.I. and the equally uncompromising and personally obsessed Mike Hammer over the years.
In fact V.I.'s harsh, unbending beliefs and her fierce determination to never compromise has taken a high toll on her emotional and social life.
V.I. Warshawski comes from the pen of Sara Paretsky, and she is featured in nine novels and numerous short stories to date. Of these novels, three, "Deadlock", "Killing Orders" and "Bitter Medicine" have been adapted for radio by the BBC. The novels were adapted for radio in the early 1990's and stared Kathleen Turner as Warshawski in "Killing Orders" and "Deadlock". She later played V.I. Warsharski in the movie "V.I. Warsharski", based on the novel "Indemnity Only", the first V.I. Warsharsky novel.
In"Bitter Medicine" the lead was played by Sharon Gless (of Cagney and Lacey fame).
Michelene Wandor adapted all three mini-series and they were produced by Janet Witaker.
Each mini-series aired on BBC Radio 4, each in six 30-minute episodes.
Killing Orders starts when V.I.'s great-aunt Rosa summons the detective to her cold suburban home. Rosa made V.IÕs childhood miserable and the detective resents the command to help her aunt prove she didn't embezzle five million dollars from a local Dominican priory.
All hell breaks loose when a mysterious opponent tries to take Vic off the case by throwing acid in her eyes and burning down her apartment. And when a friend whoÕs involved in the case is brutally murdered, it begins to look as if Vic hasnÕt got a prayer.
But Warshawski continues to follow every lead, even when they point to some pretty unorthodox conclusions: Perhaps the Dominicans are covering up a financial scandal. Maybe the whole conspiracy is under the patronage of an international conglomerate, or of Don Pasquale, king of the Chicago mob. Worst of all, someone whoÕs close to Vic could be involved—her darkly handsome English lover, Roger Ferrant, or even Aunt Rosa herself.
Deadlock involves the huge Great Lakes shipping industry. Once again the subject is murder -this time the "accidental death" of Boom-Boom Warshawski, an ex-hockey star and V.I's beloved cousin, who fell—or was pushed—off a rain-slicked pier on ChicagoÕs busy waterfront. Convinced that Boom-Boom was in fact killed because of information he had uncovered about criminal doings on the shipping lines, V I begins a long and frustrating search for her cousinÕs murderer. In the course of an investigation that takes her to a remote Canadian port city and a calamitous trip on a sabotaged freighter, V I finds all too many possible candidates for the killer, including a grain company executive involved in extortion; and rival heads of two shippers, one of whom is being blackmailed for his criminal past; a hockey player whose specialty is graft; and Boom-BoomÕs lover, an icily beautiful dancer with expensive tastes in men and merchandise.
Bitter Medicine starts when a young friend goes into premature labor. V.I. and Consuelo are far from home. By the time Consuelo's doctor, young Malcolm Tregiere, arrives, both she and her baby are dead at the local for profit hospital. V.I. assumes this is a tragic but unavoidable outcome. However, when Dr. Tregiere is brutally murdered and V.I. begins to investigate, her work unleashes a trail of violence that leads her back to the hospital where Consuelo died. The trail of greed and violence the detective uncovers proves to be bitter medicine indeed
This MP3 CD contains all three V.I. Warshawski mysteries.
Each mystery comprises six 30 minutes episodes.
A. Killing Orders
1. VIWKO_1991-11-07 Episode No.1.mp3
2. VIWKO_1991-11-14 Episode No.2.mp3
3. VIWKO_1991-11-21 Episode No.3.mp3
4. VIWKO_1991-11-28 Episode No.4.mp3
5. VIWKO_1991-12-05 Episode No.5.mp3
6. VIWKO_1991-12-12 Episode No.6.mp3
1. VIWD_1993-01-28 Episode No.1.mp3
2. VIWD_1993-02-04 Episode No.2.mp3
3. VIWD_1993-02-11 Episode No.3.mp3
4. VIWD_1993-02-18 Episode No.4.mp3
5. VIWD_1993-02-25 Episode No.5.mp3
6. VIWD_1993-03-04 Episode No.6.mp3
C. Bitter Medicine
1. VIWBM_1996-12-19 Episode No.1.mp3
2. VIWBM_1996-12-26 Episode No.2.mp3
3. VIWBM_1997-01-02 Episode No.3.mp3
4. VIWBM_1997-01-09 Episode No.4.mp3
5. VIWBM_1997-01-16 Episode No.5.mp3
6. VIWBM_1997-01-23 Episode No.6.mp3