Lawrence Block is one of those crime/mystery/thriller who I have a strange relationship with, in a way. I’ve read a number of his books, and probably three-quarters of them have left me thinking I probably wouldn’t need to read another. They weren’t bad, but neither were they good, or original, or full of characters bursting with life. However, the other quarter of his books that I’ve read are everything opposite, and quite good. The number of good has been high enough that if I run into one of his books at a sale, or on the shelves of a country home in Italy that I’m staying in, I’ll probably give it a whirl. Which was the case with In the Midst of Death. Sadly, it didn’t rock my reading world. But it was okay, and did feature this nice quote about lunchtime (or shortly thereafter drinking):
I went over to Johnny Joyce’s on Second and sat in a booth. Most of the lunch crowd was gone. The ones who remained were one or two Martinis over the line now, and probably wouldn’t make it back to their offices at all. I had a hamburger and a bottle of Harp, then drank a couple shots of bourbon with my coffee.
–Lawrence Block, In the Midst of Death