Full-Bodied Red: A Quinn Parker Novel of Suspense

Bruce Zimmerman, Author
Bruce Zimmerman, Author HarperCollins Publishers $20 (310p) ISBN 978-0-06-017931-1
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-06-109175-9
Hardcover - 502 pages - 978-0-7862-0035-1
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The third mystery featuring San Francisco phobia therapist Quinn Parker (after Thicker Than Water ) opens with an exciting scene of unexpected fisticuffs, then slows down for a few chapters before building nicely towards the violent, but not unduly graphic resolution. Called to the Napa Valley mansion of his 23-year-old patient Phillip Chesterton, Quinn is physically attacked by Phillip's stepfather, Frank Matson, who drunkenly blames the therapist for the young winery heir's disappearance. When Matson's corpse subsequently turns up in one of the estate's wine vats, a brutish local police detective declares Phillip the chief suspect. Searching for the young man and his older girlfriend, a waitress named Suzie Wong who's also disappeared, Quinn unravels a tangled web of suspicious death, blackmail, dark family secrets and crimes whose origins lie in Southeast Asia before and during the Vietnam war. Narrator Quinn is likeable, if a bit bland, and subplots concerning his woman problems and his pal Hank's marital difficulties are less than gripping. (Hank, a transplanted New York standup comic, has about as much bite as an avocado.) Nonetheless, this is a smooth, literate puzzle with a couple of surprises near the end. ( June )
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