You almost think that Ed McBain knew he was nearing the end of the 87th Precinct when he wrote this, the 55th and last one. A killer is shooting his victims in the face at close range with the same 9mm Glock. Since the 87th caught the first one, they are also assigned the following ones. While the whole cast of the 87th is stretched thin trying to track down clues in geographically disparate killings McBain gets everyone involved in the chase Fat Ollie, Steve Carella, Bert Kling, Meyer Meyer. Maybe not his strongest, but certainly a fitting finale.
The cops at the 87th struggle to stem the rapidly growing body count of a serial killer who shoots all of his victims in the face. Finding clues to the killer and his or her motivations is particularly tough because the only obvious element shared by the deceased is that they're all over 50 years of age.
This latest installment in the 87th Precinct series finds the detectives stumped by a serial killer not fitting the typical profile. With trademark wit and sizzling dialogue, McBain unravels a mystery and examine the dreams we chase in the darkening hours before the fiddlers have fled.
This book has restored my faith in Ed McBain's 87th Precinct series. For years I always looked forward to the next one. They were crisp and taut, focused and to the point, good mysteries that kept me guessing, with a recurring cast of likeable, quirky and sometimes maddening characters.
In recent years, though, McBain's writing became wordy and excessive. The stories began to contain (in my opinion) pages upon pages of unnecessary political slant: characters dissing the currect U.S. president, complaining about this and/or that policy, all clearly McBain's point-of-view, but not pertaining at all to the current mystery-at-hand, and doing nothing to move the story forward. Sleek, taut books of 180 pages bloated up to over 300, all unwelcomely to me. I was turned off as a reader.
So, Fiddlers is a happy surprise and a return to the good old 87th Precinct. A serial killer emerges. Our gang of cops tensely work to solve it, while dealing with some personal issues of their own. Every scene moved the story forward to its conclusion. A modest-ish 257 pages. No political stuff. I am delighted to recommend this one to any all lost McBain fans out there.
Just finished this book.I am stuck between rating this three and four stars I liked the story but there were parts that were better read when skimmed.
Overall its a good read. Its a good read for a train ride to and from work This story did not have the same flair and flow that I have come to expect from McBain. There were parts of this story I enjoyed more than others. For me a big distraction to this story was Ollie. He is a pompous ***. I really enjoyed THE STORY line but the execution of it was ...ok
THe book dragged a little but really picks up in the final chapters.
Its the final portion of the book that make this story worth reading.