[George V. Higgins's A Year or So with Edgar], like all his novels since The Friends of Eddie Coyle, mainly displays Higgins' admirable style and ear. Much of the book consists of lengthy monologues by the Edgar of the title, a Boston newspaperman who visits the narrator, Peter Quinn, in Washington….
Because there is so little plot to get in the way of [the] soliloquys (Edgar finds a new girlfriend; Peter, like nearly all the other men in the book, breaks up with his wife; the children grow), and because the same kind of dialogue comes out of all the characters' mouths, you have to be very fond of George Higgins's style to stay the course. As one of his longtime fans, I had had enough this time half way through; those with keener appetite may find greater reward. (p. 5)
James Fallows, "The Washington Fiction Bandwagon," in Book World—The Washington Post (© 1979, The Washington Post), June 24, 1979, pp. 1, 5.∗
Edgar [of "A Year or So with Edgar"] is a Boston political correspondent who is often in Washington, and when he is there he usually has lunch or drinks or dinner with an old Fordham classmate who is now a successful lawyer/lobbyist, and as they eat and drink Edgar talks and talks and talks—about women, divorce, baseball, Washington lawyers, the Massachusetts Mafia, newspapering, politicians, and such. He ruminates, he recollects, he elaborates, he is routinely vilely obscene, he affects a yokel accent, and the harder he tries to be amusing, the more deadly tedious he becomes…. There is no story, no movement, only Edgar smirking and droning. And this, alas, is the George V. Higgins who gave us such crack and crackling originals as "The Friends of Eddie Coyle," "The Digger's Game," "Cogan's Trade." (pp. 89-90)
"Briefly Noted: 'A Year or So with Edgar'," in The New Yorker (© 1979 by The New Yorker Magazine, Inc.), Vol. LV, No. 24, July 30, 1979, pp. 88-90.