Buck Naked

Joyce Burditt, Author, Joyce Rebeta-Burditt, Author Ballantine Books $21 (0p) ISBN 978-0-345-40136-6
Right off the bat, Demeter ""Dutch"" O'Brien, the PI who is introduced in this Hollywood whodunit is different-she has a mother. Not just any ""lay mother"" either, but a successful Beverly Hills psychologist and feminist who has refused to identify Dutch's father and peevishly wonders, as Dutch puts it, why her daughter can't just pretend that ""like Minerva I'd sprung full-blown from the head of Zeus, herself being Zeus."" Unfortunately, even Burditt's snappy dialogue isn't enough to save a lackluster plot. Recovering from a broken heart, Dutch has taken a supposedly safe job consulting for Stone, Private Eye, a weekly TV mystery series whose dullness is relieved only by its improbability. But with crazy writers and an even crazier leading man, the reprehensible Buck Stevens, a folksy guy who goes ballistic whether he's being refused by a woman or can't find his jar of peanut butter, Dutch astutely realizes this job is probably not the piece of cake she was looking for. When she receives the head of the female star in a hat box with a chilling note (""you're next""), it's too late to back out. The detecting here isn't much better than what Buck does on his show every week, but Burditt's sure and sassy tone is something of a compensation. (May)
Reviewed on: 04/01/1996
Release date: 04/01/1996
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-517-32787-6
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-345-40137-3
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