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THE TIN COLLECTORS by Stephen J. Cannell

THE TIN COLLECTORS

By Stephen J. Cannell

Pub Date: Jan. 13th, 2001
ISBN: 0-312-26959-5
Publisher: St. Martin's

A subpar thriller from veteran TV writer/producer Cannell (The Devil’s Workshop, 1999, etc.) shows rogue cops conspiring against the one good apple in L.A.’s rotten barrel.

They don’t come more exemplary than Sergeant Shane Scully, so you know he’s headed for trouble. He gets a two a.m. phone call from a lady in great distress and off he goes in response, hoping to forestall what at the very least promises to be a savage beating. Barbara Molar is married to perennially jealous Lieutenant Ray Molar, whose explosive temper and dynamite fists have often combined to inflict bodily harm, as Shane knows full well. He was once Molar’s partner, until for insufficient cause Ray picked a fight that sent him to the hospital. Now Shane arrives at the Molar home to see Ray, in one of his rages, half bury a police baton in Barbara’s solar plexus. When Shane interposes himself, Ray shoots at him, narrowly misses, and aims again. Having no other option, Shane fires back lethally, a self-defense killing that saves two lives. But to his astonishment almost no one else is willing to see it that way. All of law enforcement, including the chief of police, appears intent on taking Shane down. Why? At length, comes a glimmering: certain incriminating items, he’s told by his bosses, have disappeared from Ray’s apartment into Shane’s possession. It turns out that, in the interests of a multimillion-dollar real estate scam, the police powers-that-be have been defrauding an entire city. After much travail, Shane finally finds a faithful friend—savvy, tough, and (of course) gorgeous—in an unlooked-for place. She'll help right triumph over might and then take the deserving hero to bed.

Lackluster plotting, paper-thin people, and slapdash prose.