Smash Cut

Steven Womack, Author St. Martin's Press $18.95 (293p) ISBN 978-0-312-06467-9
The head of a sleazy international film studio becomes tangled in corrupt Louisiana politics in Womack's fine second mystery to feature public relations expert Jack Lynch. When Pearl Bergeron, the head of Louisiana's state film commission and the governor's daughter, challenges millionaire filmmaker Andrew Kwang's bid to turn a failed nuclear plant outside New Orleans into a major studio, Kwang calls on Lynch for help. Kwang becomes a suspect when Bergeron is found beaten to death, so Lynch simultaneously investigates the victim's unsavory lifestyle while employing damage-control tactics for his cool, calculating client. Tutored in film world mores by cinematographer Lois Finlayson, the first person for whom he has any feeling since the murder of an earlier love (in Murphy's Fault ), Lynch is threatened himself . He persists in his quest and uncovers a curious connection--another death--between Kwang and Bergeron. Womack's New Orleans and his cast are strong presences here, although his plot is unfortunately not up to the standard set in his previous book. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/30/1991
Release date: 10/01/1991
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