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Santa Fe Rules [Mass Market Paperback]

Stuart Woods
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Book Description

April 29 1993 Ed Eagle
Better Off Dead

Successful Hollywood movie producer Wolf Willettis stunned when he happens to read his own New York Times obituary--victim of a sordid triple homicide amid a steamy mÉage À trois with his young bride and best friend. Who's the corpse? Who wants him dead? And why has Wolf blacked out the entire evening of the grisly crime?

Unfortunatly, the Santa Fe D.A. thinks Wolf has all the answers. With the means, the motive and an inexplicable memory loss, he is promptly arrested--star suspect in a murder case that's making headlines from coast to coast. Then another murder complicates the scenario. With help from hot shot criminal attorney Ed Eagle and with New Mexico's death penalty as an incentive, Wolf races to clear his name--and dodge the real killer--in this thrilling novel of mazes, mystery and murder.


Product Details


Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

You're a rich, successful Hollywood producer who awakens the morning before Thanksgiving in your Santa Fe home with no memory of the previous night. Ignoring your dog's attempts to get you to visit the guest wing of the house, you leave and fly your private plane to Los Angeles. But you never get there: a breakdown forces you to spend the holiday isolated in a small airport town. When you finally see the newspaper the next day, you read that the bodies of your wife, your business partner and a third man--assumed to be you--have been found in the guest room of the Santa Fe residence. Further, you learn that your wife is not who you thought she was and has a most sleazy past. You don't know what's going on--or even whether you committed the murders yourself. That's the premise of Woods's ( Palindrome ) newest thriller. Wolf Willett decides to stay "dead" for a while and finish work on his new film, then hires a top defense attorney and turns himself in. Things keep moving thereafter at the same mad pace, with ever more improbable plot twists pushing the reader's suspension of disbelief to the limit--if not beyond. Willett may be the dumbest protagonist any writer will create this year. Woods is a master of this sort of thing, however, and unfolds his tale in an easy style that will keep readers engrossed and probably put his name on the bestseller lists again. 75,000 first printing; $125,000 ad/promo; Doubleday Book Club and Mystery Guild selections; Literary Guild alternate; author tour.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Kirkus Reviews

Woods (New York Dead, 1991, etc.) may hail from Sante Fe, but he doesn't do his hometown much honor with this slack mystery/homage. Even Sante Fe's gorgeous desert setting fades against the blinding silliness of Woods's plotting here. A nifty premise sets up the story: Middle-aged film producer Wolf Willett, stranded at the Grand Canyon, opens a New York Times to read that his gorgeous young wife, Julia, his best pal, and...himself! have been shot dead at his Sante Fe home. But rather than run with that kick-off by having Wolf stay officially dead and investigate the murders incognito, Woods has his hero fly on to L.A.--and finish work on his latest movie. A week or so later, Wolf returns to Sante Fe and, anticipating legal trouble, hires legendary defense lawyer Ed Eagle--a 6'7'' tower of chutzpa who's the only character here who rises above clich‚. Under Ed's expensive guidance, Wolf manages temporarily to stave off arrest for triple-murder by the suspicious local cops, who finally figure out that the body misidentified as Wolf is really that of the sleazy ex-husband of Julia's nearly identical sister, Barbara--who shows up and begins a fling with Ed Eagle. Meanwhile, Wolf's psychiatrist is murdered. Finally arrested for the triple-slaying, Wolf is tossed into jail--and learns that Julia stole his $3.5 million savings just before she died. Fortunately, a former IRS agent retrieves Wolf's money, and, while in jail, Wolf is adopted by a biker named Spider, who, impressed that Wolf once shook hands with Madonna, offers help that proves invaluable after someone puts out a contract on Wolf--someone who looks a lot like Barbara/Julia.... All this cockeyed mayhem sorts out in the end, of course, as Woods winds up with this happy sentence starring Wolf's pet pooch: ``Flaps lifted her head and grinned at everybody''--a fitting conclusion to this shaggy-dog story of a novel, a shockingly poor showing from an author who's sometimes (e.g., Chiefs; Under the Lake) terrific. -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A Pageturner for sure! July 5 2001
By Shorty
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I brought this book along with me to read during an originally short plane trip. I started reading it on the way home and after two planes and a 5 hour delay in the middle, I easily finished this book in one day. This was a great book to have with me because it was really a page turner and helped to quickly pass the time. One thing I think Stuart Woods does well is put several twists into his books which made me look up and say "No way!" throughout this book.
The main character is Wolf Willet who we get to know in the start as a guy who likes his routine and has made a large amount of money in the entertainment business. In the beginning he flies from Sante Fe on his way to LA and has plane troubles and lands near the Grand Canyon. He reads the NY Times headline which says that his wife, his best friend, and him are found shot dead at his home in a guest bedroom. Through the entire rest of the book, Wolf continues to find out who the killer and the dead people really are. You are introduced to many characters who you consistently question...who do you really trust?
This was a great mystery by Stuart Woods and I would definately recommend it to anyone!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Oh Come On Sept. 28 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Very disappointing. Stuart Woods can be very good. That's why I read him. Chiefs, Grass Roots, and Run Before the Wind were excellent. Other books have not been so wonderful and this was one of them. I kept finding myself saying, "Oh come on" way too many times during this book. Wolf doesn't seem to have a conscience, and I found it hard to find any redeeming qualities in him. This book was just too slick, and the characters way too shallow. Your wife is just killed, so you fly off to L.A. to finish a script? You start an affair? What's missing from this picture?
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4.0 out of 5 stars A South-Western Success! July 27 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is one of my favorite Stuart Woods' novels. I found it at a local used bookstore and decided to try it. This was my second novel by Stuart Woods and I feel, one of his best. Mr. Woods studied and described the atmosphere and terrain of the south-west in great detail, which was enjoyable. Another winner for Stuart Woods.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book!!! July 10 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I started this book in school during required reading time in English, by the end of the day i had finished the book. Woods keeps you on your toes the whole time while leaving you wanting to find out what happens next. Reading this book was some of the most enjoyable reading I have had. I cannot recommend this book enough to people.
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