Books by Kate Coscarelli

HEIR APPARENT by Kate Coscarelli
Released: July 27, 1993

A snappy, fast-breaking mystery/suspense in which a daughter and deposed heir to a California food consortium survives a brace of murders, heavy police suspicion, the terror of a stalker, and a final calamitous showdown. Loving her work and always assured that she would run Gallagher's Best, a food megacorp, Lacey Gallagher—divorced from husband Steve Haines and mother of teenaged Erin and J.J.—is astounded by the terms of her late father's will: her brother Scott, a charming, pleasure-loving loafer—who prefers money over running a business—is to inherit and run Gallagher's; Lacey, on the other hand, will get plenty of moolah. The siblings come to a mutually satisfying agreement—in secret—but the next day Scott is found murdered in the bed he shared with third wife Sasha. Among those interviewed by a police duo (one thinks Lacey did it, the other doesn't) are: disagreeable Sasha; bitter Jean Atwill, former executive secretary who spills a devastating secret; and even Mary, Scott's first wife, who has a surprise in store. Meanwhile, Lacey does her own snooping, and ex-hubby Steve comes up from his ranch in Texas to offer comfort before the funeral—and another murder. Lacey, in her frenzied searches and speculations, will outdistance the cops—but they'll be on hand when it counts. Even after she fingers the murderer, there are miles to go as the killer tries underwater homicide, and a brace of baddies blast away in a greenhouse. A chewy enough mystery and a good stalker finish, all paced by a rivulet of businesslike dialogue and classy digs. The people are bland, but who cares? Coscarelli (the sudsy Leading Lady, 1991, etc.) seems to have hit her stride with suspense/action. Read full book review >
LEADING LADY by Kate Coscarelli
Released: Aug. 1, 1991

By the author of Pretty Women (1989) and other foaming gossip/romance groaners, the story of a stage mother who has done, and will do, just about anything for her darling's career—while her granddaughter, ignored in all the household storms, struggles to find her own way. Laverne Thomas, deserted by her husband years ago and viewing all men as lower than a snake's belt buckle, catches the dream in the 1930's—she will hoist adorable daughter Bunny to Hollywood stardom. And she does, even when it means condemning Bunny to overnights, as a child, with a pedophile Big Director. Eventually star Bunny will marry a studio-approved Ivy League lawyer, Frank Hunter. But Frank gives up on the marriage (during which Laverne has no qualms about barging in on their lovemaking), then splits, and Bunny's daughter, Chelsea, will not know her father for years, thanks to awful Laverne. Meanwhile, Bunny's career is a roller coaster, while Laverne oversees Bunny's nympho needs (even once preps her with heroin for the camera) and ignored Chelsea enters both the shady and sunny side of jewelry-making and falls in love with the son of an earl. It all winds up with a pregnancy and birth, violence and three deaths. A bit of dirt, a trace of trash, and routine romance—but, still, the novel has that Hollywood-pop pull. Read full book review >