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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
Although editor Otto Penzler states in the introduction to Murder Is My Racquet that the term "tennis" conjures up images of fresh white clothes, elite country clubs, and well-mannered applause, his newest anthology of tennis-related mysteries is anything but genteel.
Featured within are 14 never-before-published stories by some of the genre's biggest names, including Lawrence Block, Lisa Scottoline, Kinky Friedman, David Morrell, and Ridley Pearson. The world's most talented -- and temperamentally challenged -- tennis player is the focus of Block's "Terrible Tommy Terhune." Mr. TNT, as he has been tagged by the media, is a loose cannon on the court. Cussing out officials, breaking racquets, and getting ejected from matches has led Tommy to try different therapies for his uncontrollable temper tantrums. When all other treatments fail, Tommy secretly travels to West Africa and participates in a voodoo ceremony -- with unforeseen results. "Needle Match" by Peter Lovesey is a mystery about a Wimbledon ball boy who, in 1981 when John McEnroe defeated Bjorn Borg in a legendary battle, witnessed an unlikely -- and unsolved -- murder right on the courts. Daniel Stashower's "A Peach of a Shot" explores relationships, doubles tennis, and those once-in-a-lifetime overhead smashes that your spouse will never forget…
The strength of this uniquely themed anthology, aside from the impressive all-star list of contributors, is its sheer diversity; no two stories are even remotely similar. Featuring a range of fascinating characters, from Mafia hit men to conniving proctologists to homicidal parents of promising young athletes, this collection of tennis-inspired whodunits is, simply put, superb. Paul Goat Allen