EASIER TO KILL by Valerie Wilson Wesley


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Mandy Magic is scared. Even though Newark’s best-known radio personality has it all, from the upscale digs to the red Lexus to the cadre of adoring hangers-on like her confidante/adviser Pauline Reese and spoiled, charming spendthrift Kenton Daniels III, a message from her past—a seemingly innocuous note reading simply “MOVIN’ ON UP”—has spooked her good. There have been other incidents, she tells p.i. Tamara Hayle—obscene graffiti on her walls, slashed tires on her Lexus, the murder of her hair stylist and “cousin” Tyrone Mason, stabbed during an apparent robbery in Lotus Park—but it’s that note that’s really gotten Mandy’s attention. Tamara, dazzled and delighted to have a client who can actually bolster her bank balance for a change, obligingly starts digging into her past and soon realizes that Mandy’s scared of nothing so much as herself—the pre-celebrity identity of Starmanda Jackson she thought she’d never have to face again, her nightmarish early days as a prostitute, the sordid story of how she came to adopt her teenaged daughter Taniqua. The general direction of the mystery is obvious from the word go, yet Wilson (No Hiding Place, 1997, etc.) keeps peeling back layers and layers from Mandy’s carefully constructed life with a skill and determination that recall Ross Macdonald. (Literary Guild/Mystery Guild alternate selection)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1998
ISBN: 0-399-14445-5
Page count: 208pp
Publisher: Putnam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 1998


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