I've been in Science Fiction for too long, and need a good murder mystery/whodunnit type of book to read, but having stayed out of that section for so long, I'm overwhelmed by the choices.

I like character-driven work, but I'm hoping to find good mystery elements too. I've enjoyed most of Chricton, but Ludlum makes me want to put a fork in my eye. Grisham put me to sleep on the one I tried, but I've never picked up a James Patterson (yet). Ed McBain was fine for a book or two, then I got tired of all the blow jobs he loves to put in.

Any suggestions?

Oh, and I also prefer male MC's (personal quirk brought on by reading way the heck too many "strong female leads" with McCafferey).