BACKHAND by Liza Cody


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Another rambling adventure for London's p.i. Anna Lee (Under Contract, 1987, etc.), who works, with much dissatisfaction, for Briefly Security. Here, crisp, take-charge clothing retailer Lara Crowther has hired her to find Cynthia, wayward teenage daughter of Penny Garden, Lara's foremost knitwear designer. Penny's own store has gone bankrupt--though the stock (supposedly in the hands of a liquidator) keeps turning up mysteriously here and there--and her husband-manager has decamped. Meanwhile, the appearance on the scene of entrepreneur Hugh Fellows--a bounder if ever there was one--takes Anna to a plush condo in the Florida Keys, where she encounters a gangster-style murder, catches up with her quarry, and realizes that Lara is playing a game of her own. Nobody's game plan is too clear in the beclouded plotting here, including our heroine's. She's left agonizing over lover Quex, the job with Briefly, and a possible move to the US. An expansive set of intriguing characters and some sharp dialogue help--but can't save--a story out of focus.

Pub Date: Feb. 25th, 1992
Page count: 288pp
Publisher: Doubleday