His 11th adventure takes Southern California psychologist/sleuth Alex Delaware to a remote Pacific island where hidden evils of the past and present are gradually, harrowingly, brought to light. While his L.A. house is being renovated, Alex, his guitar-making lover, Robin Castagna, and their doted-upon French bulldog, Spike, depart Malibu (home base in the most recent Self-Defense) for a four-month stay on the island of Aruk, where Alex has agreed to help Bill Moreland, a doctor who has lived and worked there since the end of WWII, organize his decades' worth of notes. Aruk, not far from the Bikini atoll, has only the look of paradise. While sorting through Moreland's files, which are stored near the eccentric doctor's extensive spider ``zoo,'' Alex learns of the recent mutilation death of a young local woman, with its suggestions of cannibalistic ritual. Another Moreland guest dies while flying over the island's off-limits U.S. Navy base; a sleazy U.S. senator, once in the service with Moreland, visits the island on a base-closing mission. Then a second local woman is gruesomely murdered, and a member of Moreland's staff is charged with the crime. Adroitly blending arachnophilia and psychological suspense, Kellerman leads Alex and Robin through a maze of coded messages before they finally unearth Moreland's island secrets and the political wrongdoings linked to them. Series fans may miss LAPD detective Milo Sturgis as Alex abandons his beloved koi for reef-dwelling tropical fish, but loyal familiars and Kellerman newcomers alike will turn these pages compulsively. Major ad/promo. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1996 Release date: 01/01/1996 Genre: Fiction
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