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An Interview with Jerry Bader, Author of The Axel Files

Bader 1

Jerry Bader is an author, screenwriter, and Senior Partner at Mr. Bader specializes in noir detective, spy, and crime novels and screenplays, but he has also written biographies and children’s books.

Noir Detective Novels:

The Axel Files: Florence’s Floozy, The Axel Files: The Cherrywood Box, The Axel Files: The History of Cardenio, The Axel Files: The Disappeared Honjō Masamune, The Axel Files: The Pakal Robbery

Noir Espionage and Spy Novels:

Deception, Delusion, Dilemma, Diversion, Defection

Noir Crime Novels:

The Outlaw Rider, Dead End, Palermo, Stone Cold, The Aussie Switch, Ballet of Bullets

Noir Short Short Collections:

Noir I, Noir II

Hybrid Graphic Novels:

The Method, The Comeuppance, The Coffin Corner, Grist For The Mill, The Black Crane


Organized Crime Queens, The Secret World of Female Gangsters, What’s Your Poison? How Cocktails Got Their Names, Cowboys, Lawmen, & Outlaws

Children’s Books:

Two Dragons Named Shoe, The Town That Didn’t Speak, The Criminal McBride, The Bad Puppeteer, Mr. Bumbershoot, The Umbrella Man, The Ninth Inning, 14 Ridiculous Tales of Sage Silliness

All books are available at

You can buy The Axel Files: Florence’s Floozy here.

Who/what made you want to write? Was there a particular person, or particular writers/works/art forms that influenced you?

I suppose there are two major influences in my writing beyond my natural contrarian approach to life. The first influence is the old 1940s radio plays that I used to listen to in the 50s when I was a little kid. I would fall asleep listening to “Johnny Dollar” and “Gunsmoke” on CKEY radio, Toronto. Theatre of the Mind has also been something I was interested in. The second influence has to be the classic Film Noir movies, in particular, The Maltese Falcon and The Third Man. When I write, I hear the voices of Bogart, Greenstreet, Lorre, and Welles speaking my words.

What other professions have you worked in? What’s something about you that your readers wouldn’t know?

In my younger days, I helped run a photographic business. Later on, I started MRPwebmedia. My sons and I created websites and Internet video commercials. I wrote the scripts, cast the actors, and produced the videos, while my sons did the shooting, editing, and sound design. Writing books and screenplays was a natural extension of that experience.

Tell us the story of your book’s title. Was it easy to find, or did it take forever?

I don’t seem to have any trouble coming up with an idea. I have written detective, spy, and crime novels, as well as biographies, hybrid graphic novels, marketing books, children’s books, and screenplays. The Axel Files series (currently five books) is my updated take on the classic hardboiled detective. Axel Webb is a twenty-first-century version of Sam Spade and Philip Marlowe, a loner who is a little less rough around the edges and a little more successful. He is a man with a double Achilles heel: beautiful women and migraine headaches. Axel tells us his stories in the first person, but each has its roots in the past—my theme is ‘the past informs the present.’ Every story is fiction, but every tale is based on some lost or stolen artifact. Axel’s specialty is finding lost, stolen, or misappropriated items. In the case of Florence’s Floozy, the lost item is the Savola Diamond, a 133-carat pink diamond that disappeared during WWII when the owner, an Italian aristocrat, gave the diamond to his Swiss lawyer for safekeeping. The real diamond was yellow, not pink, and it still hasn’t been found, but like I said, my books are fiction. Mexican revolutionaries, Nazi spies, religious extremists, exiled Italian aristocrats, and an assortment of other noir characters populate the book.

How did it feel when you first saw your book cover? Or when you first held your book in your hands?

There is always a sense of self-satisfaction when I hold a print version of one of my books, but the real kick is when I hear my words come to life in the audio versions available on ACX. It reminds me of when I was a kid listening to “Johnny Dollar” and “Gunsmoke” on the radio. I am driven by the need to create.

If your book had a soundtrack, what are some songs that would be on it?

I think Ennio Morricone’s soundtrack for The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly could work or, alternatively, the theme music for The Prisoner starring Patrick MacGoohan, who would have made a great Axel Webb.

What is one thing you hope readers take away from reading your book? How do you envision your perfect reader?

My books are fiction, but they are based on real events in history. I would hope readers would learn something new from my stories: something about history or maybe even a new word or idea they’ve never heard before. I would hope my books are entertaining, but I would also hope they provide some insight along the way.

What was the most rewarding/meaningful part of publishing your book?

A published book is a physical manifestation of creation and is always the most rewarding part of writing.

What new writing projects are you currently working on? Or, other projects that are not writing?

I am continuing to write more of The Axel Files series. I am writing The Axel Files: Finding Lunia, a fictional account of the 2010 robbery of the Paris Museum of Modern Art. I am also pursuing having my work turned into limited-run television series or film franchises.

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