cover image Deviant Behavior

Deviant Behavior

Earl Emerson. William Morrow & Company, $17.95 (225pp) ISBN 978-0-688-08335-9

``Deviant behavior'' is an ironic label for Todd Steeb, a lonely, teenaged track star whose behavior throughout this story is actually heroic, and who, at the outset, is thought to have run away from home. Private investigator Thomas Blackfirst introduced in The Rainy City is hired to find him. In the course of his quest, Black encounters a trail of cash (leading to Todd), an eccentric writer and his has-been, Hollywood-actress girlfriend and the many denizens of Seattle's nicely detailed Chinatown. However, neither the events described nor the characters evoked make for an engaging story. Deviant Behavior is pleasant and workmanlike at its best, but it is never compelling. Paperback rights to Ballantine. (Nov.)