Murder at the Watergate

Margaret Truman, Author, Topp, Author Random House (NY) $25 (336p) ISBN 978-0-679-43535-8
Truman's capital crime wave reaches 15 volumes (Murder in the House, 1997, etc.) as the locale in which one presidency died becomes the focus for a murder that may doom the aspirations of a would-be president. Vice President Joseph Aprile, whose code name ""Straight Arrow"" will make readers think of Al Gore, is determined to stake out a position on Mexico different from his president's as he prepares to seek the Oval Office in the next election. Mackensie Smith, law professor at George Washington University and a friend of Aprile's, is in an ideal position to help, since he is already scheduled to be in Mexico as a U.N. election observer. When Mackensie accepts a clandestine assignment to meet with a Mexican rebel leader on Aprile's behalf, he is launched into a dangerous and deadly game involving diplomats and assassins, politicians and traitors, aristocrats and rebels. Truman's characterizations--from hard-driven deputy chief of staff Chris Hedras to wealthy party hostess Elfie Dorrance--remain fairly shallow. But her plot is well grounded in the realities of Mexico-U.S. relations, and she manages a couple of nasty surprises that enliven the all too predictable finish. (July)
Reviewed on: 06/01/1998
Release date: 06/01/1998
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