The Game of the Silence

Richard Sauer, Author
Richard Sauer, Author Walker & Company $19.95 (277p) ISBN 978-0-8027-5733-3
Reviewed on: 06/01/1989
Release date: 06/01/1989
Lee Warren, protagonist of this creditable first novel, has spent the years since he was a teenager trying to break into the movies as a scriptwriter. He knows it's no go, but he can't tear himself away. Then he meets beautiful, unstable Callie Rose and her brother Michael, another marginal Hollywooder. Lee falls in love with Callie, but she's soon killed in an auto crash, and he nearly dies with her. Gradually, the crash comes to seem less and less accidental. Caught up in a tightening web of fear and suspicion, Lee is forced to unravel the past in order to save himself. He already knows that moral shabbiness underlies much of Hollywood glitz; now he discovers that the industry's endemic blackmail and incest have unleashed a killer. This generally suspenseful mystery belongs to the California detective tradition best exemplified by Dashiell Hammett and Ross Macdonald--in which the investigator of a current crime is led back to an old turpitude that has precipitated a crisis--but Sauer's jejune, irksome Californians come across as stilted adolescents. (June)
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