With the cover of this novel, it’s easy to assume it’s one of the 87th Precinct novels. Of course, it doesn’t actually say that, but it’s easy to make that mistake, which I’m sure the publisher helped along with the cover matching the mid-80s 87th Precinct novels. I didn’t realize it until all of a sudden they were actually in New York.
This book deals with Bryan Reardon, a detective in the 5th Precinct, and the rest of the 5th squad as they deal with one of the infrequent murders in their precinct. Reardon also has to deal with a divorce in process that he’s not in favor of and a new romance, maybe, with a researcher for Forbes. So a restaurant owner gets whacked while Mob guys watch, but it looks to be a result of some financial shenanigans and perhaps a touch of geopolitics as an Arab got whacked at LaGuardia by the same perps.
The mid-80s novels set in New York are very, very bleak in their outlook on the safety in the city. Definitely progressed toward that Escape from New York future. Then a certain mayor came to lead the city and turn it around in the 1990s. Wow, if that mayor was running for president, he’d definitely be my Plan B. Fortunately, Ed McBain isn’t around to see me linking up his books to politics with which he (McBain) would probably disagree.
So it’s a one-off as far as series go, but it’s classic McBain and worth a read.