The appended bibliography and necrology by Edward D. Hoch is the tipoff that Mystery Scene's annual anthology has swallowed...

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THE YEAR'S 25 FINEST CRIME AND MYSTERY STORIES: 5th Annual Edition

The appended bibliography and necrology by Edward D. Hoch is the tipoff that Mystery Scene's annual anthology has swallowed up its venerable rival, Hoch's Year's Best Mystery and Suspense Stories. This year's edition, as usual, is comprehensive to a fault, with indisputable brand names--John Harvey, Nancy Pickard, Sharyn McCrumb, Bill Pronzini, Max Allan Collins, Marcia Muller, Sara Paretsky, Joan Hess, Anne Perry, and Hoch himself among them--jostling for attention, even though many of them have already been culled by earlier anthologists. The stories are suitably varied in approach (check out, among others, Jean Cooper's densely textured memoir ""The Judge's Boy,"" J.N. Williamson's claustrophobic ""Beasts in Buildings, Turning 'Round,"" and Lawrence Block's moody ""Keller in Shining Armor"") and almost uniformly accomplished, but three of them--Julian Rathbone's businesslike ""Of Mice and Men and Two Women,"" Peter Lovesey's elegiac ""The Pushover,"" and Ed Gorman's remarkably compact ""The End of It Ail""--easily earn pride of place. A fine collection, though its late competitor will be sorely missed.

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 1996

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Carroll & Graf

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 1996