TO KILL A CLOWN by David Charnee


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Pat Arnold, the houseboy/secretary/and sometime snoop for attorney-detective D.L Blacker, now gets a crack at working at his favorite occupation--clown--when he's hired as one of 50 nationwide clowns for the Terry Town fast-food chain; unfortunately, though, at the annual meeting in New York, Pat's clown-pal Rick is killed--supposedly by his spumed lover, one more Terry Town employee who's then killed in a shootout with a cop investigating the case. Several weeks later, another Terry the Clown is dispatched and yet another...--someone seems to be picking them off in alphabetical order, but only if they're clowns specializing in juggling. Blacker, a part-time clown himself, interrogates Terry Town executives, as well as a free-lance writer who's preparing an exposÉ of Terry Town clowns. It's Pat, however, who must pinpoint the killer before he becomes the next fatality. An improvement over Party Till You Die--with an engaging bubble trick, a Houdini-derived escape feat, etc.--but the clues are still see-throughable. Overall: an acceptable variation on the Wolfe/Goodwin partnership, and a series with a respectable future.

Pub Date: Nov. 23rd, 1992
Page count: 256pp
Publisher: St. Martin's