Christof Weigold

The Man Who Won’t Play the Game. Hollywood 1921: Engel and the City of Sin

Der Mann, der nicht mitspielt

The Man Who Won’t Play the Game. Hollywood 1921: Engel and the City of Sin

English sample translation available
Recommended for translation by New Books in German (Spring 2018-edition)
Harzer Hammer Award for Best Crime Novel 2018

A thrilling and tremendously funny crime novel set in the Roaring Twenties and based on a true story

Hollywood 1921: An investigation in the Hollywood of the Roaring Twenties – the era of the silent film and Prohibition, a true hotbed of sin. Mysterious deaths shake the city and threaten the still-nascent movie industry.

The beautiful and unpredictable Pepper Murphy assigns Hardy Engel, a failed actor and pri-vate detective, to discover the whereabouts of the well-known starlet Virginia Rappe. Shortly afterwards, Virginia dies under mysterious circumstances after attending a party thrown by the popular comedian Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle, who is accused of violently raping and fatally injuring her. Fueled by the tabloids of the Hearst Corporation, the case mushrooms into the biggest scandal of the silent-movie era, threatening to drag all of Hollywood down into the abyss.

Hardy Engel investigates behind the scenes, in two film studios with completely conflicting interests and amongst the German expats surrounding the founder of Universal Studios, Carl Laemmle. He is assisted by his favorite bootlegger, Buck Carpenter, and Pepper, with whom he falls head over heels in love. When Hardy finally discovers the truth, which all too many people are trying to hush up, his life is not the only one that is in acute danger...

Christof Weigold’s debut is a thrilling and tremendously funny detective story, based on a true story and in the tradition of hardboiled crime fiction.

Crime Novel


ISBN: 978-3-462-05103-2
release: 15. February 2018
640 pages, gebunden mit SU


22,00 €
0,00 sFr
22,70 €

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sample translation

About the Author

Christof Weigold, born in 1966, is the author of plays and, from 1996 to 1999, was a staff writer for the “Harald Schmidt-Show” in Cologne, for which he also stepped in front of the camera. Since 2000, he has been a freelance screenwriter for film and television. Der Mann, der nicht mitspielt (“The Man Who Doesn’t Play Along”) is Christof Weigold’s first novel and the inaugural volume of a series around German private detective Hardy Engel set in the Hollywood of the 1920s. Weigold lives in Munich.