Where There's Smoke Author:Ed McBain My name is Benjamin Smoke... — I'm a retired police lieutenant. — I used to command an eighteen-man squad of detectives in one of this city's busier precincts. I quit because I got bored. Without attempting ro sound immodest (I'm normally shy and self-effacing), there's really very little challenge in police work. Once you get the knack of it, ... more »it becomes easy. And boring.
Since my retirement in 1971, I've privately investigated only four cases. I do not have a private investigator's license, and I never expect to apply for one. Whatever anyone may tell you about licensed private eyes, they're hired mostly to find missing persons or get the goods on adulterous husbands; my aspirations are higher.
I have only one regret.
I've never investigated a case I couldn't solve. I've never encountered the perfect crime.« less