The Violet Closet

Gary Gottesfeld, Author Fawcett Books $4.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-449-14570-8
First novelist Gottesfeld weaves an intricate mystery that grips readers from the opening chapter. The hackneyed convention of the disheveled, hard-drinking, down-on-his-luck journalist playing detective is given a new spin in the character of Charlie Halleran, a Vietnam veteran whose crazed wife killed his beloved daughter. He's drawn into the mysterious case of Alice, a girl he hears pleading for help on a Los Angeles radio call-in broadcast, because it resembles a story of child abuse and murder he covered in New York 18 years earlier. Charlie bulldozes his way into the increasingly tangled life of Rena Halbrook, the on-air psychologist, and insists on getting involved in Alice's case. As the tale races toward a gory climax, the reader learns about the links between childhood sexual abuse, adult violence and post-traumatic stress syndrome. Neither the message nor the execution are subtle, but the book's slam-bang pacing and avid dishing out of nasty details make it effective. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 09/01/1989
Release date: 09/01/1989
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