The Pleasure Business

Patrick Anderson, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt P $17.95 (291p) ISBN 978-0-15-172047-7
Prostitution and political intrigue provide the backdrop for this short, overly plotted thriller by the author of The President's Mistress . Grady Malloy, a novelist and former presidential speechwriter, receives a call from his daughter Penny, asking his help in locating her best friend Bonnie, who has run off to be a call girl in Manhattan. Since Bonnie's father is Henry Prescott, an old friend of Grady and now a U.S. senator preparing to run for the White House, Grady agrees to see Bonnie on his imminent trip to New York. He tries to persuade Bonnie to abandon her sordid lifestyle, but what seems at first merely a case of misguided rebellion leads Grady and Penny into an adventure involving murder, drug dealing and the machinations of an Israeli spy team. After a strong start (Grady is an interesting and amusing character), a succession of increasingly implausible episodes--leading to the revelation of an insane plot to start WW III--eventually reduce the novel to a run-of-the-mill thriller. Too bad, because Grady's sardonic voice and the touches of Washington politics and Manhattan street scenes promise a better read. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 04/01/1989
Release date: 04/01/1989
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