One Cried Murder

David Cooper Wall, Author Dembner Books $16.95 (229p) ISBN 978-0-942637-21-2
Upper-crust Manhattan, mixed with the theatrical and gay milieu, provides the setting for this uneven first mystery by an actor and journalist. Private investigator David (``Ham'') Hamilton accompanies his friend, police captain Marc Florio, to a murder scene, the elegant Upper East Side apartment of elderly, socially prominent Leonard Craig. The latter is a good friend of Ham's employer, trial lawyer Arthur Roseman, who asks Ham to find out what he can about the victim, actor Lane Peters. Since Peters was the lover of Craig's much younger wife, Samantha, Craig is the prime suspect. Despite being shot and hospitalized twice, Ham doggedly investigates, finding that both Lane and Samantha had other lovers--both males--widening the cast of potential murderers. Four other killings occur before the villain is found by process of elimination, with a final shootout taking place in an off-Broadway theater. While Wall's atmospheric mystery shows considerable promise, the characters are shallow, a collection of attributes rather than fully realized people, and, despite a lot of sturm und drang, the plot is essentially simple-minded. (June)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
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