Ten Little New Yorkers

Chances are good that TEN LITTLE NEW YORKERS (Simon & Schuster) is the last print appearance of KINKY FRIEDMAN ’s fictional alter ego (see “ Killing Me Softly ,”). Which perhaps explains why the Kinksters, scribe and sleuth both, appear uncommonly morose in writing and partaking of their usual ration of Cuban cigars and strong waters. This homage to Agatha Christie (eight corpses in Greenwich Village and all clues point to Kinky) proves again that Friedman can write with the best of them when the spirit moves him, but maybe the thrill is gone for good. Why else would the flesh-and-blood Kinky launch a campaign for governor of Texas and have his imaginary namesake bugled to Jesus in the “what just happened?” finale of his latest and possibly ultimate mystery?

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