1/7/2004 
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY 
"What a joy to watch these same characters at work after 47 years..." 
THE FRUMIOUS BANDERSNATCH
Ed McBain
Mystery (Simon & Schuster, $ 25)

If you think the title's batty, try this for a chapter opener:
"The squad was somewhat perturbed. One might even
say they were quite blaxitomed!" Is the 77-year-old
McBain losing his mind? As his wiseacre and
battle-scarred omniscient narrator might say: Don't bet
your fried corn husk on it, Gertie.

The 53rd entry in the 87th Precinct series is top-dollar
McBain, as funny and adroit as his last couple, but
old-school edgier. What a joy to watch these same
characters at work after 47 years, this time investigating
the harbor-yacht kidnapping of a Beyonce-like pop star.
Imagine your favorite Law & Order cast solving fresh
mysteries into infinity, with no reruns, and you have
some sense of McBain's grand, ongoing
accomplishment. A- --Gregory Kirschling
 

 
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