This isn't my usual style book to read. I'm not a fan of the hard-core, nitty-gritty crime fiction, but I enjoyed this one nonetheless. Part of the allure is that it's set in my old neighborhood of Brooklyn Heights - Montague Street is the main drag.
My favourite passage in the book is early on, where the author is describing the old hotels of the Heights. This is what he says about the St Felix (which is a fictionalised version of the St George where my husband and I lived for 4 years):
The St Felix took up an entire city block, from Clark to Pineapple and from Henry to Hicks. It hadn't started out that way, originally it had just been a large white tower on one half of the block, but it sucked in all the other buildings like a tumor eating up healthy cells until the whole block was one big amorphous funky-smelling conglomeration with a few stores stuck to the outside, a deli and a liquor store and whatnot, and an arcade where you could catch the big elevator which went from street level through the basements and sub-basements, all the way down to the subway.
I have no clue if that's what the St George was like in 1973, but when I was last back in Brooklyn a few weeks ago, the deli was still there, as was the liquor store, and the arcade with the elevators to the 2/3 subway - Clark Street stop. The Heights is a desirable neighborhood these days, but in the early 1970s it wasn't. I enjoyed the descriptions of a "down on her luck" Heights; so different than the neighborhood I know today!