KILLED IN THE RATINGS by William DeAndrea

KILLED IN THE RATINGS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Breezy is the operative word in this au courant but attractively old-fashioned (hello Rex Stout, wherever you are) tale of murder in and around ""the Network"" (a mixture of NBC and CBS). Narrator-sleuth Matt Cobb of the Network's ""Special Projects Dept."" (troubleshooting) answers a summons from Someone With a Secret to Tell and naturally finds said Someone dead--and finds himself a suspect. The secret has to do with a way of fixing the TV ratings, but all sorts of other motives surface, including gangland (Jewish variety) interests, before Cobb escapes some kidnappers and arranges his ""William Powell-type"" denouement with all suspects assembled and all souls bared. What keeps it all rolling? Cobb's quirky charms and hang-ups--like his fury at the hopeless grammar of the TV executives he serves (""Diagram that sentence!"" he finally explodes. ""You are a disgrace to the communications industry""). Like we said: breezy.

Pub Date: March 16th, 1978
Publisher: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich