Hard-boiled shamus, sleazy Los Angeles style, as narrator-sleuth Thomas Kyd (Kyd for Hire) gets involved with a bad-and-beautiful woman who leads him down the familiar smelly-garden path. She's tough-talking, promiscuous, but oh-so-vulnerable Laura Cassidy--whom Kyd meets by bizarre accident (a terrific opening scene); and later he's hired to find her by her husband, a mother-dominated Big Shot writer/producer--who is subsequently murdered during an orgy, with a stolen screenplay the only clue. Meanwhile, Kyd has found, bedded, and cocained with Laura (""It was a jungle lust, a savage funky itch"")--only to lose her again. And more film folks will die--some after boozily spilling semi-interesting sob stories to Kyd (who gets hurt a lot). But, though Harris now and then comes up with sharp, funny L.A. dialogue and description, his hero's rather spaced-out embrace of clichâ‰¤-shamus stances and trendy sleaziness makes for an odd, unattractive combination--and many readers won't be around at the end for a surprising, it totally arbitrary, twist. Mixed bag.