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Wednesday 12 July 2017

‘Endgame’ By Bill Pronzini

Published by Forge,
3 June 2017.
ISBN 978-0-7653-88186-3 (HB)

The No Name Detective Agency has taken on numerous odd cases, but in “Endgame,” it has accepted two of the most unusual.  One, for which the No Name Detective himself pursues instead of enjoying his semi-retirement, begins with the plea by a woman whose husband is found dead alone in a locked cabin.  She doesn’t believe that he was not accompanied by another.  She asks No Name to identify the supposed woman, so she can give her a piece of her mind.

The other case involves a missing person, an agoraphobic woman who never leaves her house.  Her husband is the obvious choice as murderer when her body turns up in a remote park. No Name was retained by the husband before his arrest, and continues his investigation following the husband’s arrest.  In each case, No Name reaches a conclusion, but faces the serious question of whether to reveal certain information he learns while seeking the solution.

The author involves the reader in the emotional dilemmas No Name faces, which is a recurring event in the series, and which enhances its readability.  Meanwhile, Bill Pronzini continues to create classic detective stories written so well that they seem easy to create, but aren’t.  Recommended.

Reviewer: Theodore Feit
Bill Pronzini was born 13 April 1943 in California. Heis an American writer of detective fiction. He is also an active anthologist, having compiled more than 100 collections, most of which focus on mystery, western, and science fiction short stories. He is married to fellow mystery author Marcia Muller, who he often collaborates with. He is best known for his Nameless Detective novels and also writes the John Quincannon series.

Ted and Gloria Feit live in Long Beach, NY, a few miles outside New York City.  For 26 years, Gloria was the manager of a medium-sized litigation firm in lower Manhattan. Her husband, Ted, is an attorney and former stock analyst, publicist and writer/editor for, over the years, several daily, weekly and monthly publications.  Having always been avid mystery readers, and since they're now retired, they're able to indulge that passion.  Their reviews appear online as well as in three print publications in the UK and US.  On a more personal note: both having been widowed, Gloria and Ted have five children and nine grandchildren between them.

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