Dead Aim

Wendell McCall, Author St. Martin's Press $16.95 (272p) ISBN 978-0-312-02184-9
McCall demonstrates a wide range of abilities in this engaging debut novel. He choreographs brutal fight scenes with credibility, communicates an appreciation for and detailed knowledge of rural Idaho landscapes, and handles human relationships with sensitivity. His 64 protagonist Chris Klick, who makes a living from a percentage of the royalty checks owed to former musicians whom he tracks down and pays off, is on vacation when beautiful Nicole Russell involves him in a search for her missing husband, an adulterer, thief and drug dealer. As they penetrate the layers of deceit hiding the true reasons for Russell's disappearance, Klick and his friend, wealthy ex-basketball star James Chandler Wilshire Lyel III, run into life-threat ening trouble. All the young women characters here are sexually manipulative, and Klick and Lyel's undercover foray into Mexico resonates with similarities to a TV action-series script, but the strengths of the writing lift this novel above its flaws. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 11/03/1988
Release date: 11/01/1988
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-440-20510-4
Hardcover - 319 pages - 978-1-74030-542-6
Hardcover - 319 pages - 978-1-58547-141-6
Paperback - 260 pages - 978-1-890208-20-2
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