Problems of the heart, ambivalent feelings of independence, and acute observations of reality lend investigator Sharon McCone a solid and enduring foundation of credibility. The San Francisco series heroine opens McCone Investigations with the bizarre case of a long-ago friend and onetime lover who believes someone wants him dead. McCone must first separate truth from fantasy, since the highly paid but lonely corporate turnaround man may just be paranoid, imagining several attempts on his life. Muller (Pennies on a Dead Woman's Eyes, LJ 6/1/92) maintains her exemplary high standards: great female private eye, smooth flowing narrative, and riveting plot.
Muller took a giant step--and a big risk--in 1977, introducing Sharon McCone, first of the strong, tough, savvy new breed of female private investigators. Since then, of course, the female sleuth has become the hottest trend in the genre. Despite the popularity of your Warshawskis and your Millhones, however, Muller's McCone remains the grand lady of them all--less abrasive, more refined, not as mouthy, but at least as smart, adventurous, and likable as V. I., Kinsey, or any of the hundreds of others on the beat. Muller's fifteenth McCone mystery is one of her best, with a voice from the heroine's past providing the impetus for her latest case. "Suits" Gordon, a scheming hippie drug dealer on McCone's college campus 17 years ago, is now a "turnaround man," a troubleshooting guru who fixes corporate disasters about to happen. The techniques Suits uses guarantee he'll make enemies, and now one of those enemies is harassing him in some very nasty ways. He asks McCone to protect him from his unseen adversaries. Then Suits' wife is killed in a tragic explosion, Suits disappears, and McCone is left to uncover the truth about her friend from a maze of cryptic clues. Fine writing, an original plot filled with plenty of unusual twists, and rapid-fire action, plus McCone's ingenuity, sparkle, grit, and her very human vulnerability add up to one terrific book--sure to be a best-seller.