DEAD ON THE DANCE FLOOR

Heather Graham, Author . Mira $24.95 (352p) ISBN 978-0-7783-2027-2

Prolific romance author Graham, with more than 90 novels to her credit, sets her new romantic suspense tale in the world of professional ballroom dance. At the Moonlight Sonata Dance Studio in Miami Beach, coaching for professional competitions is available, as is recreational dance instruction. When Lara Trudeau, imperious star professional, drops dead after a performance, authorities, citing a lethal combination of pills and alcohol, deem the death accidental. But patrolman Doug O'Casey, a new dance student and Lara's most recent lover, suspects foul play, as do some associates, including the studio manager, Shannon Mackay. Doug finally persuades his brother Quinn, a private investigator, to sign up for dance lessons so he can look into the case. Meanwhile, in the vicinity of the dance studio, several seemingly unrelated murders occur. Quinn begins to fall in love with his dance instructor, Shannon, although she could be the murderer he seeks—for that matter, so could his brother. When Shannon gets a cryptic message, "You're next!" she's determined to find the killer herself; her efforts put her in harm's way. The story isn't all suspicions and chills: readers can learn something about salsa, tango and waltz contests, and there's a touching bit about a homeless girl who's a natural dancer and finds a home. Graham's more suggestible fans will doubtless put on their dancing shoes and head for the nearest Arthur Murray studio. (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 02/16/2004
Release date: 03/01/2004
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