Black Light

Daniel Hearn, Author Dell Publishing Company $3.99 (224p) ISBN 978-0-440-20787-0
Hearn's ( Bad August ) absorbing new hard-boiled mystery follows PI Joe Noonan as he looks up a few old friends--but pk what he learns about the inner workings of Animal Farm, a '60s commune, is far from a nostalgia trip. Consumer rights advocate Evan Mattingly has hired Noonan to find Lenny Byrd, a mutual acquaintance from their college days. When Mattingly is murdered, Noonan decides to continue the search. His first stop is Alex Cutler, a record company president who is cleaner and much richer than when he belonged to Animal Farm. Cutler claims to have lost touch with the old crowd, but Noonan learns that Mattingly was investigating Cutler's company; with a bit more digging, he discovers that when Animal Farm burned to the ground in 1970, one member, Kevin Moon, died. At this point Noonan receives a letter, postmarked Los Angeles, that contains $1000 in cash and says ``talk to Lenny Byrd.'' The typed signature reads Kevin Moon. Thus Noonan ``now had two clients and they were both dead men.'' Some ex-commune members have indeed kept in touch, it seems, and Animal Farm's (and thus Moon's) demise wasn't quite accidental. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 07/01/1991
Release date: 07/01/1991
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