Maria's Girls

Jerome Charyn, Author Mysterious Press $25 (288p) ISBN 978-0-89296-460-4
Seasoned mystery writer Charyn ( The Good Policeman ) unleashes another Dantesque vision of the hell that is contemporary New York City. Police Commissioner Isaac Sidel plans to fight corruption in the city's public schools with the help of his new right-hand man, Carollsp ok Brent. But Brent, although married to ``the second-richest woman in New York,'' is in debt to the mob and falls into the hands of Sidel's longtime nemesis, Sal Rubino. Brent's vigorish gets paid off, but Sidel is gunned down. While the ``Commish'' recovers with the help of lime jello, dreams of baseball and visits from his old friend Margaret Tolstoy, events in his department come to a boil. Brent's wife is drawn into the web of mob-connected Carlos Maria Montalban, flashy and venal superintendent of the Lower East Side school district. Soon the close links between the city's archdiocese, government, high society, police force and crime organizations are exposed, and a shootout between mob families at a Central Park baseball game leaves few survivors. Charyn's newest dark and frenetic tale sings with the lingo of the streets, his trademark rapid-fire dialogue and surprise relationships. (May)
Reviewed on: 05/04/1992
Release date: 05/01/1992
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