Frank Rooney's latest novel. (The Courts of Memory, McGinnis Speaks, etc.)- is a crisply written foray into the sexlife of neurotic Hollywood stars and their satellites. The adventure begins when Leo Kinsella's childhood friend and much-married actress Corinne Merchant is found savagely assaulted in a Santa Monica beach cottage. Leo's investigations are purely disinterested, but they arouse the suspicions of his actress wife, Rachel Teller, imperilling their already rocky marriage. His gradual elimination of possible suspects such as Corinne's former husband Gareth Long, lover Mike Kosrow and admirer Ward Leonard and wife Ruth, bring to the surface chunks of undigested pre- and post-marital experience which cause their participants to crack according to the various stresses and strains of their outward lives. Whether Mr. Rooney's latest vivisection of Hollywood's manners and mores is successful or not, the operation is adroitly performed with sensitivity and flashes of mordant wit.