HE HUFFED AND HE PUFFED by Barbara Paul

HE HUFFED AND HE PUFFED

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The author's best work has been set in New York (Killer Fee, etc.), and her latest is no exception. Here, big-time financier A.J. Strode--pushing 60, wife number four on her way out--is using blackmail, not for the first time, to accomplish the takeover of House of Glass, a company in competition with one of his. Strode has zeroed in on three shareholders--Richard Bruce, owner of Brace Shipping Lines; socialite playboy Jack McKinstry; and world-renowned violinist Joanna Gillespie--all of whom have horrendous past secrets. His victims won't sell their holdings, though, for various, not-too-convincing reasons. Their defiance--even after he tightens the screws and they capitulate--so enrages Strode that he summons them to his town house with a vindictive scheme in mind (helped along by right-hand man Myron Castleberry) that will destroy them all. Strode, however, doesn't show for his weekend guests, who waste no time in working out a scheme of their own that promises to get them off the hook. Not so--and it's no surprise when Strode turns up dead in his library with no fewer than three knives in his chest. It's up to Detective-Sergeant Marian Larch, along with partner Ivan Malecki, to pinpoint the killer in the weakest part of this mostly engrossing, fast-paced story of cross and double-cross. Flawed but intriguing entertainment.

ISBN: 684-18925-9
Publisher: Scribner
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