The Big Kill

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The Big Kill
First edition
Author Mickey Spillane
Country United States
Language English
Publisher E.P. Dutton
Publication date
Media type Print (Hardcover)
Pages 224

The Big Kill (1951) is Mickey Spillane's fifth novel featuring private investigator Mike Hammer.


Drinking at a seedy bar on a rainy night, Hammer notices a man come in with an infant. The man, named Decker, cries as he kisses the infant, then walks out in the rain and is shot dead. Hammer shoots the assailant as he searches Decker's body. The driver of the getaway car runs over the man Hammer shot to ensure that he won't talk. Hammer takes care of the child and vows revenge on the person behind the deed.

Hammer's trail of vengeance leads him to hostile encounters with his police friend Pat Chambers, the District Attorney and his stooges as well as beatings, assassination attempts, and torture from gangsters that Hammer reciprocates.

Hammer also has loving encounters with two women he meets on his quest. Marsha is a former Hollywood Actress who was beaten by Decker when he robbed her flat. Ellen is the estranged daughter of a rich horse breeder who works for the D.A..