Busybodies

Patrick Anderson, Author Simon & Schuster $18.45 (0p) ISBN 978-0-671-69004-5
Sharp-tongued gossip columnist Tom Tullis calls himself ``the Hemingway of keyhole journalists'' in pursuing tips for his Washington tabloid, but his investigations turn deadly in this highly entertaining expose of the nation's capital. A friend of presidental candidate Sen. Dan Allworth, Tom follows up a rumor involving the senator in a liaison with a beautiful young woman. But Allworth turns the tables and wants Tullis to find out who's been investing heavily in his campaign--and why. Answering this question leads Tullis far from his normal reportage, and puts his life in increasing danger. A staffer for Allworth's rival, Gov. Craxton, is killed after telling Tom about a ``pattern'' in contributions to Craxton's campaign. An aide to a mysterious, wealthy Japanese national slips Tullis ``hints'' about the origin of the questionable donations, but none of them pan out. Investigating rumors of a gay ``men's club'' frequented by top politicians lands Tullis in the hospital; after he wonders aloud about drug money, his house is firebombed. Anderson's ( High in America ) novel does not sustain the humor of its opening chapters, but its fast-paced portrayal of Washington's hidden agendas and mores is marvelous. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 11/01/1989
Release date: 11/01/1989
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