IN-LAWS AND OUTLAWS by Barbara Paul
Kirkus Star

IN-LAWS AND OUTLAWS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A veteran author (The Renewable Virgin, etc., etc.) at her best--in a quietly bizarre story narrated by young widow Gillian Clifford Decker, who, soon after her husband Stuart's death ten years ago, had detached herself from his loving but possessive family: the rich, socially impeccable Deckers of Boston. By chance, Gillian, living in Chicago, sees an account of the death of Stuart's older brother Raymond, now head of the family. An impulsive sympathy call to his fluttery widow Connie results in a flight to Boston, where she tries to cool Connie's conviction that Raymond, who died in a fire at their Nantucket house, was a victim of murder. It turns out that Raymond and Connie's brilliant young son Theo was killed by kidnappers in Norway some years back, during the year that Gillian had spent directing a theatrical company through China for the State Department. She now discovers that three other teen-agers in closely knit Decker families have died in accidents in the past year, leaving only Joel, 15-year-old son of Rob Kurland and Michelle Decker, to carry on the family empire. Something very disturbing is happening, and the team of detectives hired by the Deckers has come up with zilch. Gillian tries hard to find a rationale for the string of tragedies--extending her visit to join the families in their Nantucket compound. That's where it all comes clear--and changes her life forever. Gillian's low-keyed, conversational style lends power to the horrifying elements of a plot that grips the reader from start to finish. Top-grade Paul.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1990
Publisher: Scribners