DEATH WARMED OVER by Lee Martin

DEATH WARMED OVER

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A complex case begins for Texas police detective Deb Ralston (Too Sane a Murder, etc.) when she finds mail-carrier Roy Bassinger shot to death in an isolated corner of her Fort Worth beat--on the edge of the old Kelly farm. The farmhouse, however--empty until the recent arrival of aging Patrick Kelly, who'd long since served his prison sentence for the murder of his brother Sonny--is then the scene of more violent death: Patrick's bullet-ridden body is found there, and, worse, the corpse of a young girl. She turns out to be Helen French, victim of an unreported kidnapping, whose father Jared had sent ransom money to the farm. There's no trace of the money, but other clues abound--with much ado about identical 1957 Chevrolets. Meanwhile, Deb works with postal-inspector Otto Castillo and her psychiatrist friend Susan in tracking down members of the Kelly family and building a profile of the killer. In the end, it's Deb's memories of the Kelly history, old photos, and another tragedy that bring the killer to justice. Force and focus are somewhat dissipated by too many red herrings, but the good ol' boy background and Deb's amiable persona help make this a mildly intriguing entertainment.

Pub Date: Dec. 20th, 1988
Publisher: St. Martin's