WHAT GOES AROUND COMES AROUND: A Mystery Featuring Brian McNulty

Con Lehane, Author, Cornelius Lehane, Author . St. Martin's Minotaur/ Dunne $23.95 (304p) ISBN 978-0-312-32298-4

A repetitious and slogging plot weighs down Lehane's second Brian McNulty mystery, set in the late 1980s, a few years after the action in his well-received debut, Beware the Solitary Drinker (2002). When bartender McNulty finds an old acquaintance dead near the hotel where he works, he's drawn into a search for the killer by his mentor, John Wolinski, now an executive with a hospitality chain. The trail leads to Atlantic City, where McNulty met Wolinski, and to colleagues and crimes from the past. McNulty is a decent, persistent man with strong loyalties—to old friends, his father's leftist politics and his union—but his detective skills need honing. The reader becomes dizzy as McNulty travels back and forth across the Hudson, searching for shreds of clues that rarely advance the investigation until the solution almost falls in his lap. As in his first novel, Lehane empathizes with working stiffs and creates an arresting cast of colorful characters; he also brings alive the dark, offbeat world behind the facade of luxury hotels and bars. Hopefully, his next book will be as good as his first. Agent, Alice Martell. (Feb. 9)

Forecast: Advance praise from George Pelecanos, plus blurbs from Kinky Friedman, Scott Phillips and Margaret Maron, should keep the momentum going despite this relatively weak sophomore effort

Reviewed on: 12/20/2004
Release date: 02/01/2005
Genre: Fiction
Open Ebook - 304 pages - 978-1-4668-1379-3
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