Books: The New Mysteries

Murder used to be all a mystery novelist needed to get on with his story. The new whodunits stick to that main tent at traction, but beckon the jaded customers with such lurid little sideshows as sadism, pandering, homosexuality, counterfeiting, prostitution, adultery and grave-robbing.

DEAD STORAGE, by George Bagby (191 pp.; Crime Club; $2.75), describes in repellent detail the last hours of a prosperous pimp, and introduces as ugly a set of murder suspects as the season has offered. The case is tackled by Inspector Schmidt of New York Homicide, whose homey habit of taking off his pinching shoes in moments of...

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