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A plethora of generally interesting asides make this lethargically paced mystery an easy, yet ultimately a somewhat frustrating read. As we follow the paralegal days and jazz-piano-playing nights of Ms. Taylor Lockwood, we glimpse the truth behind the dark-wood panels of the venerable law firm Hubbard, White & Willis. Taylor's initial assignment is to retrieve a stolen document that could cost the firm a case and an attractive young litigator his job. The theft proves to be merely a subtext as one ferocious partner pushes for a merger, two older partners firmly oppose it and the rest of the principal players scramble for position while sides are drawn up. Taylor finds coked-up associates with grievances, partners with financial problems, and granddaughters to raise, not to mention call girls. Offices (including her own lowly hole in the wall) are soon bugged, and after an interminable wait, murder makes its entrance. Edgar-nominated Deaver ( Manhattan Is My Beat ) whips up enough atmosphere for a whole series here: late-night music, copious jazz lore, performance-art interludes, man troubles aplenty--the plucky Taylor partakes of them all. She's a likely guide to both the legal and the late-night, but this expansive mystery doesn't have enough narrative gears to shift through. Author tour.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
When a promissory note for $25 million due to a client bank is stolen from hotshot lawyer Mitchell Reece's office in Hubbard, White & Willis, he turns to an unlikely source for detective help--aspiring jazz pianist/paralegal Taylor Lockwood. Taylor is supposed to recover the note in time to prevent the debtor firm from wriggling out of the debt by declaring bankruptcy--and that client bank from pulling its business from the firm. As Taylor gets down to her investigation-- which consists mainly of fighting off the partners' propositions by day and pawing through their offices by night--upstart partner Wendall Clayton plots a merger of Hubbard, White & Willis with a new-money firm--a merger that will throw patrician senior partner Donald Burdick and his supporters to the wolves. The detective plot (torpid theft and, eventually, homicide) and the (far more engrossing) merger plot finally do come together, though not in time for Deaver (Hard News, etc.) to do either one justice. -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.See all Product Description