Englischsprachige Literatur

McBain Ed


Hodder Headline, London 1996


Ed McBain or Evan Hunter (his real name) is an experienced writer and “Romance” is one of I don´t know how many 87th Precinct crime stories. He develops a thrilling plot with a group of actors and their new play at the center. McBain is a master at witty, sometimes absurd dialogues, specially when the police interview suspects or witnesses and you can feel with them when they are led by the nose. McBain also likes to focus on race relations and so he  lets his main character Detective Bert Kling fall in love with a black police doctor, with all the difficulties this relationship implies. In his imaginary city things have gone wrong for quite some time: “Where once people pounded the door of opportunity and shouted,”Forget we´re black, forget we´re Hispanic, forget we´re Asian”, these same people were now shouting “Don´t forget we´re black, don´t forget we´re Hispanic, don´t forget we´re Asian!” (p. 257). Well, and there is the incompetent author of the play, who doesn´t get shot, sadly, but a just as incompetent actress is killed instead. Of course, Kling and his team solve the case, and at least for him there is a happy ending, in spite of mounting racial conflict.