Top positive review
4 people found this helpful
Ed McBain was and is the best on writing a great story with realistic characters
on May 21, 2014
I love Ed McBain. His books are serious, comic, irreverent and a joy to read. And its amazing the range he had with the 87th Precinct Books of which this is one — and the lawyer Matthew Hope to Blackboard Jungle, written as Evan Hunter.
This is the 12th in the percent books with all the usual characters -- working cops just trying to put away the bad guys. And they have come across an old nemesis they thought was dead. Steve Carella is dressed as a homeless man to catch teenagers who are setting homeless men on fire; he gets burned and he gets beat up. Meanwhile, the others on his team receive a threatening note that if someone is not paid $5,000, a commissioner will be killed -- and is. Then the note asks for more, to not kill the deputy mayor and in a spectacular bombing, he is killed. In the midst of all this the town of Isola is hit by one of the biggest storms in history, the police department is being painted by seemingly inept painters who spatter everything and finally, the cops come across an attempt to rob a tailor. And somehow, its at the tailor's where everything somehow comes to gather. Very much as you realize it probably happens for many crimes. The characters feel real and speak realistically, and you feel for them the whole time you're reading the book. Ed McBain/Evan Hunter was a genius. There are few authors I can say that for every time I open a book.