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KILL ME TENDER by Daniel Klein


by Daniel Klein

Pub Date: July 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-312-26187-X
Publisher: Minotaur

Poor Elvis. First he was an unflattering postage stamp, now an unconvincing sleuth. With nothing much to do at Graceland except fend off the sycophants and down high-calorie breakfasts, the King decides to pay a condolence call when a young fan club member surprisingly succumbs to cardiac arrest. He's soon singing gospel on her church steps and being untrue to his intended, Miss Priscilla, with Miss Selma, a real fine black lady. Then two more fans die, a high-school gal pal now writing a tell-all book about Elvis follows, and all these deaths start to look suspicious. Could an Elvis impersonator be responsible—or a member of the King's inner circle? And who's taunting Elvis on those 45s delivered to Graceland? Elvis skips a recording session to investigate, consults a New York lesbian psychiatrist about possible motives (yeah, right), then learns about an instantaneously acting exotic poison from Miss Selma's boss, a medic treating po' black folk. He also runs afoul of a southern sheriff and manfully locks horns with many more cholesterol nightmares before he confronts the demented murderer in a scene as unlikely as his being named a spokesperson for the Vatican, or for Slim-Fast.

More clichés than a hound dog has fleas. Klein, coauthor of Where's Elvis? (1998), hits every wrong note, from bad dialogue to unfunny farce. Skip the book; play the records.