Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Review of ":Death Takes a Byline," by D. S. Lliteras

 Review of

Death Takes a Byline, by D. S. Lliteras ISBN 9781937907679

Five out of five stars

 Kept me interested till the end

 While I did not read this in one sitting, I did complete it before the day I received it was over. Larry Meachum is a very good but struggling author. His books are being marketed and distributed through a small, independent publisher and sales are at best sluggish. Joe Gagliano is the owner of the publishing company and he comes up with a wild scheme to get Larry’s name and books some valuable publicity and hopefully boost sales. The plan is for Larry to fake his suicide and then assume the new identity of Tony Wilson. Due to an auto accident, Tony was disfigured and after many surgical procedures, he no longer looks like Larry.

 The story opens with Tony Wilson being visited by freelance reporter Susan Kirkpatrick, pursuing a story for a tabloid. It is a bizarre story, namely that Tony Wilson is in fact Larry Meachum. For the scheme for publicity for the books of Larry Meachum was far more successful than the schemers had thought. Two of his books are now bestsellers and the royalties are considerable.

 Where there is so much money there is greed, and it leads to the weaving of an elaborate scheme, there are few people in the former life of Larry Meachum that can be trusted. All are opportunistic, with some showing no hesitation in committing murder. Especially that of Larry/Tony, even those that were closest to him think more of money than they do of him.

 I would read a long section of the book, and then put it down for a while. However, it was not long before the siren call of curiosity was overwhelming, and I picked it up again for another reading session. It is not a deep mystery, but it is a worthy read.

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