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by Fred Hunter

Pub Date: June 1st, 1999
ISBN: 0-312-20463-9
Publisher: St. Martin's

Whoever spilled Mason LaPere’s blood, reflects his friend Alex Reynolds, either didn’t know Mason was HIV-positive or wasn’t afraid of AIDS. It’s a promising clue, but it soon gets buried under the foolish complications that begin with the destruction of Mason’s beloved collection of dolls and continue with the evisceration of Mason’s husband, Ryan Morton. When they decide to dust off their part-time CIA credentials and investigate, freelance graphic artist Alex and his own husband, men’s-clothing salesman Peter Livesay (Government Gay, 1997; Federal Fag, 1998), cheered on by Alex’s stage-British mater Jean, end up inheriting not only Mason and Ryan’s embarrassing West Highland Terrier, Muffin, but the violent Buddhist sect that’s murdered Mason and Ryan in hopes of recovering a priceless religious artifact stolen from their shrine by some enterprising Westerner. Shades of The Moonstone, you think? Yes . . . and of Raiders of the Lost Ark, Torn Curtain, Wait Until Dark, Alice in Wonderland, Bulldog Drummond, and all those jungle movie serials of the 1930s, each parallel conscientiously noted in its place. The one thing this gossamer mälange of sinister Orientals, State Department panjandrums, gay-rights activists, and quips more game than scintillating won’t remind you of at any point is real life.