THE MAN FROM INTERNAL AFFAIRS by Nat Hentoff

THE MAN FROM INTERNAL AFFAIRS

KIRKUS REVIEW

Middle-aged NYPD detective Noah Green, now married to youngish reporter Shannon (Blues for Charlie Darwin, 1982), returns to investigate another batch of gruesome downtown murders. This time, however, Hentoffs jumpy narrative (62 mini-chapters, a dozen subplots) pays only perfunctory attention to the un-mysterious mystery--while funky street-life vignettes and internal NYPD doings flare with gritty (sometimes stagey) energy. Thus, as Green searches for a Lower East Side psycho-killer (two hookers have been found mutilated, the upper halves of their bodies in garbage cans), he himself is being investigated for corruption by the NYPD's Internal Affairs Division. Why? Because a retired cop, virulently anti-Semitic ("Jews are not, of course, Satan's only agents, but all Jews are his agents"), has been sending anonymous, accusatory letters about Green to the unflappable IAD chief. Furthermore, Green is disturbed to find that the primary suspect in the contrived psycho-killings is cranky old street-person Moishe, who's surely harmless. So there's plenty of distraction--for both Green and the reader--before the cop clears his name and tracks down the cook killer (who is treated to some fierce instant justice while being interrogated). As a procedural, then, this is even less satisfying than Blues for Charlie Darwin. But fanciers of naked-city melodrama and down-and-dirty black comedy will find lively diversion here--in Hentoff's large cast of eccentrics and creeps (pimps, junkies, savvy street-kids, quixotic loners, NYPD ratfinks and yes-men), in the garish gobs of rough, multi-accented New York dialogue.
Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1985
ISBN: 0445405090
Page count: 215pp
Publisher: Mysterious Press
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15th, 1985




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