When newspaperman Stuart Reed, out running on his lunch hour, stumbles on the mutilated body of Diana Diaz, he becomes obsessed with the story and, eventually--after focusing on a news photo taken by free-lancer Milt Roberts--decides that she was killed by TV wildlife host Culp Jenkins (the unfortunate Diana was gutted like a dead deer). Jenkins leans on Reed's editor; Reed is fired, goes on a bender, and retreats to the dinky Clarion, where he learns of another death and surmises that Jenkins is at it again. He begins stalking Jenkins, who, to rid himself of this pest, decides to help him track the real killer, leading to arson, another murder, and a horrific highway decapitation. One of the few mysteries in memory to use the flashback technique creatively and combine past and current murders. Second- novelist Wright (The Last Frame, not reviewed) is a fierce new talent with a long, possibly bestseller, career ahead.