Shooting Elvis

Robert Eversz, Author Grove/Atlantic $21 (0p) ISBN 978-0-8021-1582-9
Sometimes too much uncommon adventure can only be described as common. Bored with her job as a kiddie photographer and lured by the promise of extra cash, Mary Alice Baker delivers a briefcase for her biker boyfriend, Wrex, to a man in the L.A. Airport. The exchange leaves her with a large locked case-contents unknown but certainly illegal-and the shocking blame of accidentally blowing up LAX with a bomb cached in the briefcase. Mary escapes the wreckage and holes up in a motel where she pierces her nose, dyes her hair jet-black and reinvents herself as Nina Zero. Nina's run-from the law, notoriety and the scam ring intent upon retrieving the locked case and eliminating her-brings her into contact with several classic L.A. types. Billy b, her roommate-turned-boyfriend who paints huge canvases of American kitsch symbols, and neurotic screenwriter Cass scheme to turn Nina into their ticket to fame. Ben and Jerry, hard-nosed, small-time PIs who employ Nina, help her dodge the law as she contrives to remain free and nab her stalkers. Throughout, Nina longs for home-despite her abusive father to whom she credits her violent ""talents""-and laments the loss of trust in a world where turning a buck and getting the right press are key. This story aspires to be sharp, wry and brilliant and at times attains a legitimate glimmer. For the most part, however, like the smog and crime of L.A. itself, it rolls on predictably if somewhat distressingly. Film rights to Wild Wolf Productions (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 04/01/1996
Release date: 04/01/1996
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