East side, west side…homicide. There’s murder all around the big bad city, but especially on the 87th Precinct’s turf, where a young nun turned rock star turned nun again has been strangled in a local park, a pair of illicit lovers have been gunned down in the nude, and an executed pimp just turned up in the river. Detectives Steve Carella and Artie Brown are the two lucky stiffs assigned to crack the cases of these four unlucky ones. But just to lighten the crime wave up a bit, there’s also a slippery burglar on the loose, leaving behind fresh-baked cookies in lieu of thank-you notes for all the valuables he heists. What does any of this have to do with the accidental death of a Florida bar owner eaten by alligators? Only time—and the hard-boiled police work of Carella and Brown—will tell. But while they’re beating the bushes for clues and perps, their every move is being dogged by a jittery ex-con who’s packing heat much more lethal than the blistering summer sun’s…and aiming to pop a well-placed cap in a certain cop.