Noir by Christopher Moore, 339 pages
Sammy is a regular joe, a bartender at Sal Gabelli's place in San Francisco in 1947, when a gorgeous dame named Stilton (like the cheese) walks in, sending his heart aflutter. Problem is, some less-than-savory mooks also walk in, getting Sammy and Stilton in a heap of trouble involving prostitutes, a secret society, some shades-wearing government types, and a venomous snake (OK, that last one is all Sammy's fault, but it certainly doesn't help matters). Oh, and there's some alien action going on too.
It's obvious that Moore had fun writing this book, which is full of the 1940s slang I hinted at in that first paragraph. And it's a fun book to read. It's not my favorite of Moore's books, but I did like it a lot (the nerd in me loved the afterword, which talked about Moore's research and inspirations for characters), and I'll continue to read just about anything this hilarious man writes.