THE MAINE MASSACRE by Janwillem van de Wetering
Houghton Mifflin; 256 pages; $8.95
The demimonde of mystery fans is divided into amateurs and professionals.
What aficionado has not been confined in a summer cottage on a rainy day with someone who does not know about thrillers and keeps announcing every 40 pages who killed Roger Ackroyd or who has :he key to the locked room? The connoisseur knows that the fun of a suspense novel lies not in competing with the author but in admiring his craft.
There are amateurs and pros among writers too. One of the most influential pros is Ed McBain. He...