Sharon McCone’s search for the missing daughter of a pair of old friends leads her to a flurry of crimes old and new.
From their vacation in far-off Costa Rica, Trish and Jim Curley reach out to McCone when their daughter, Michelle, already a successful real estate rehabber at 23, stops answering her phone. It’s true, says Zack Kaplan, one of the two remaining tenants in the Breakers, Chelle’s current project: He hasn’t seen her for a week. Having dismissed Damon Delahanty, the ex-con boyfriend working with her on the Breakers, Chelle has been down to two other helpers, Al Majewski and Ollie Morse, and one other tenant, self-avowed wizard Tyler Pincus, who seems incapable of kidnapping or killing the woman who was trying to evict him. The most disturbing piece of evidence left behind, a “wall of horrors” in Chelle’s stripped-down bedroom that displays newspaper clippings of celebrated Bay Area murderers, has been there ever since an earlier tenant, aspiring true-crime writer Bruno Storch, posted the clippings there years ago. But it’s one of those items, the one featuring a shadowy figure called the Carver who’s still at large after killing half a dozen men, that provides the crucial connection when Zack is stabbed to death in a vacant lot in Outer Richmond. Fans may feel that the mystery of Zack’s death and Chelle’s disappearance is upstaged by another season of The Sharon McCone Show, with updates on every recurring character from McCone’s Shoshone birth father, Elwood Farmer, now finally recovered from his brutal beating by white supremacists (The Color of Fear, 2017), to her free-spirited adoptive mother, Katie McCone, to her husband and partner, Hy Ripinsky, to her favorite operatives and more distant relatives.
Though it works against suspense and urgency, the emphasis on the regular cast pays off this time in a truly traumatic development you can bet Muller will be exploring in further detail in her next installment.