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Russell, a British writer who often provides teasing twists (Mr. T, etc.), is disappointingly predictable in this under-par effort (published in England in 1978)--with a one-note plot that becomes almost comically hectic only at the very end. The ingratiating heroine here is UK-born movie-star Anjelica Browne, a down-to-earth type who's about to make the big move up from sexy schlock to serious stuff, playing the lead in a major film. Standing in her way, however, is crazy ex-husband Terry O'Malley, an alcoholic has-been who wants Anjelica back--no matter what. He invades the movie set, destroying her performance; he shadows her everywhere; worst of all, he threatens to publish old sex-photos of starving starlet Anjelica--taken when she was the unwitting (though less-than-innocent) pawn in a sex-blackmail scheme involving an American governor (now a White House contender). This sturdy premise, unfortunately, is tediously belabored for nearly 150 pages as the reader waits for the inevitable discovery of Terry's dead body--which occurs soon after he attempts to seduce Anjelica's 15-year-old sister. Then there's a flurry of false confessions as everyone--Anjelica, her father, her producer-mentor--tries to protect everyone else. . .followed by Anjelica's near-fatal showdown with the real (far-fetched) culprit. Tolerable nonsense at best, only half-redeemed by Anjelica's wry, no-nonsense narration.

Pub Date: Sept. 4th, 1986
Publisher: Walker