THE CHEETAH CHASE by Karin McQuillan

THE CHEETAH CHASE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Jazz Jasper (Elephants' Graveyard, 1993) hasn't had a client for her Kenyan safaris in two months, but she's not exactly idle: She's hunting down whoever left a deadly Saharan scorpion in the loo to sting her friend and host Nick Hunter, a journalist who'd retreated to a private preserve among the Samburu. Seeing no way to get directly at any of the suspects -- Nick's sister Viv Porter, a grasping boutique owner; her husband, Roger, a ""facilitator"" of deals among Kenya's rich and powerful; William Mutani, a wealthy, powerful restaurateur who says he was just passing through Nick's preserve; and Mutani's flirtatious friend, Gerry Weller, a front man for Kenarabia Oil -- Jazz flies with Nick's widow, Wynn, to a Samburu village that might have been the source of the big story Nick had hinted he was chasing. But their plane goes down in the bush, plunging them into an enthralling series of adventures and putting detective work on the back burner as they try to save a baby cheetah from being smuggled out of the country by a Saudi princess, outrun the hirelings her sheikh sends after them, and make their way back to the kind of civilization that's always dreaming up new ways to steal money (an ingenious cover for large-scale traffic in pelts) and kill people (a final surprise about Nick's fatal sting). As usual, Jazz makes a blundering but appealing detective whose investigation is wrapped, like Godiva chocolate, around a sumptuous tour of sub-Saharan Kenya.

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1994
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Ballantine