SEPARATE CASES by Robert Randisi


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Randisi's guileless title, and not much else, links p.i. Miles Jacoby's search for specialist hooker Two-John Wheeler, a potential alibi for Mafioso Don Salvatore Scalesi (accused of killing his wife), and his reluctant investigation into the murder of colleague Andy McWilliams. Andy's widow Carolina, also a p.i., is convinced despite the evidence that he wasn't killed by a mass murderer called the Backshooter, but by something closer to home that had been giving him the jitters. Jacoby interrupts his beer-drinking program--a recent mauling on the witness stand by hostile D.A. Dirty Dicky Hilary has sent him into a tailspin--to take Caroline along when he gets a tip on Two-John's hideout (she's dusted, but they run into other company); but it isn't until Two-John gets her throat cut and Jacoby's favorite bartender, Packy Moran, gets shot in the back that Jacoby rouses himself to trace Andy's connection, through hotshot detective Walker Blue, to politically minded financier Jules Van Voorhies and (surprise!) Salvatore Scalesi--via a letter that he should have picked up a week earlier ""if I hadn't been so stupid."" Did Scalesi really kill his wife? Jacoby never does find out--or care--but you'll be glad to know that the (unrelated) killers of Two-John and Packy will get pulled in, off-stage, in time for the final curtain. Randisi (Full Contact, 1984; No Exit from Brooklyn, 1987) keeps the writing and plotting strictly functional, leaving more loose ends than a spaghetti factory.

Pub Date: Aug. 17th, 1990
Publisher: Walker