LOOK BACK ON MURDER by Malcolm Gray

LOOK BACK ON MURDER

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Ex-cop Alan Craig, now a private eye, is puzzled by an invitation to the country house of famed TV personality Miles Jordan, but Craig accepts anyway. He finds the other guests--actress Lorraine Maxwell, politician Charles Laxton and wife, Jordan's separated wife Sandra and present girlfriend Gail, among others--are puzzled too until it's realized that most of them are somehow connected to the long-ago murder of Nigel Randall, who was killed on the grounds of this very estate. Randall's wife Susan was convicted of the murder and died in jail. It appears that Jordan is their son; he was five at the time of his father's death and was adopted by an aunt and uncle. Having recently discovered his true heritage, convinced of his mother's innocence, he now wants to stage a kind of reenactment to find the real culprit, incidentally producing a TV program for his investigative series. But while his bewildered guests are still trying to figure things out, Jordan is found shot to death, and another murder follows before Craig puts all the tedious pieces together and fingers the killer. Here, wooden characters and endless small talk do nothing to relieve the absurdity of the plot. One hopes the author's many mysteries written under his own name, Ian Stuart, are more fun to read than this silly concoction.

Pub Date: June 6th, 1986
Publisher: Doubleday