The book behind the major motion picture High and Low, King's Ransom is the 10th book in Ed McBain's 87th Precinct series. Here, McBain delivers the full-throttle action and suspense we have come to expect. When a wealthy businessman is faced with a kidnapping, the ransom could ruin his biggest deal ever - unless Detective Steve Carella can find the culprits before the kidnapping turns to murder.
©2011 Ed McBain (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
“McBain has the ability to make every character believable - which few writers these days can do.” (Associated Press)
“McBain forces us to think twice about every character we meet… even those we thought we already knew." (The New York Times Book Review)
I'd previously read a couple of these 87th Precinct books that I thought were clever and entertaining (Fat Ollie's Book and Fiddlers). This one, though, is really awful. It seemed like nobody could think of a plan to deal with solving a kidnapping except by shaming a wealthy man into paying the ransom for another man's child. The police didn't seem to be doing anything other than abetting the kidnappers in collecting the ransom; not a stitch of actual police work or detection. The only suspense was whether the idiot police could manage to follow the kidnappers' instructions well enough to get the kid back. Fortunately the civilians took care of that matter themselves. Couple of cute twists in the end, but not worth wading through the muck to get there. I guess a lot of people liked the movie that was based on this, but I can only assume they had a bunch of really cute actors.
I would recommend any book read by Dick Hill, this one is extra great because it is one of Ed McBain's better stories.
The terrific dialogue, excellent pacing and plotting.
Dick Hill is one of the two best narrators working, in my opinion. When he used to read Connelly's Harry Bosch books - he WAS Harry Bosch. No one since has come close to nailing the character and stories like Hill did.
I will buy any book or series that Hill reads. He is that good. He knows when to go big, pull it back; he understands the story he is telling - he's not there just to read a book and pick up a check. He is completely invested in every character and storyline.
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