MOONDREAMER by Zoe Kamitses


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Courtney Brooks, TV-news star in the almost-Barbara-Walters category, fails in her bid to become an anchorwoman--and therefore puts all her energy into her new independent documentary-production company. Her first project: a study of ""Fantasy in America,"" which will dig out the real story behind ""Moondreamer""--a nationally popular radio-show (with myriad spin-offs) that features romantic/sexual fantasies narrated by a woman called ""Kim."" What Courtney doesn't know, however, is that ""Kim"" is really the schizoid alter-ego Of California radio's deranged, fat Gerta Gumm, a super-engineer who's been obsessed with movie-star Kim Novak since childhood; furthermore, Kim is a homicidal alter-ego, having already killed several people who threatened Gerta's career and hermit-like existence. (She lives with her mother, a sexually-askew invalid.) Thus, when Courtney starts investigating the ""Moondreamer"" show in California, trying to expose the identity of the sexy-voiced Kim, she becomes the next target for the lethal Kim/Gerta. And the attempted murder will involve the most farfetched notion in this hopelessly farfetched thriller: Courtney, you see, just happens to be the spokesperson/model for the new heated garment called the ""Body-Cozy""--so Gerta/Kim will send Courtney a boobytrapped ""Body-Cozy"" that almost succeeds in blowing Courtney to smithereens. True, first-novelist Kamitses shows a bit of promise in the creepy background scenes involving crazy, pathetic Gerta. But Courtney, who's going through a shrill identity crisis, is an unappealing heroine; the psycho-suspense is stretched too thin; and Kamitses' attempts to pad the proceedings with kinky sexual material (e.g., Courtney's lesbian friends rape a male intruder with a cucumber) make this psychosexual concoction unpleasant as well as unconvincing.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1982
Publisher: Little, Brown