This second volume of Opening Shots is a collection of twenty-three first stories published by prominent mystery and crime writers. Some of these offerings are remarkably mature, professional work. Others are more obviously early works, before the writers' skills reached full maturity. But every one of them is a pleasure to read, and in each can be seen the seed of the writer's craft.
"Each writer has included an introduction worth the price of admission all by themselves," observes Block. "Writers, it seems to me, are never more eloquent or more interesting that when they reminisce about their early days, and recalling one's first success seems a spur of anecdotage for most of us."
Following on the heels of the successful first volume of this series, the stories in this stellar field include:
"Final Rites" by Doug Allyn "Don't Kill a Karate Fighter" by William Chambers "Entrapped" by Harlan Coben "Yellow Gal" by Michael Collins "Together" by Jeffrey Deaver "The Rough Boys" by Harlan Ellison "Tole My Cap'n" by Joe Gores "Layover" by Ed Gorman "A Bunch of Mumbo-Jumbo" by Jan Grape "The Cure" by David Handler "Till Tuesday" by Jeremiah Healy "Village of the Dead" by Edward D. Hoch "Chalk" by Evan Hunter "It's a Wise Child Who Knows" by Stuart Kaminsky "Who Killed Cock Robin?" by H. R. F. Keating "Medford & Son" by Dick Lochte "Thieves' Honor" by John Lutz "Not All Brides Are Beautiful" by Sharyn McCrumb "Manslaughter" by Joyce Carol Oates "You Don't Know What It's Like" by Bill Pronzini "The Disappearance of Penny" by Robert J. Randisi "A Victim Must Be Found" by Henry Slesar "Blue Rose" by Peter Straub "A Bad Night For Burglars" by Lawrence Block