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A music-biz insider uses his connections with slippery agents, sneaky producers and his fellow jazz artists to solve a blackmailing case in this entertaining debut set in L.A. Evan Horne, once a career jazz pianist, is recuperating from a car accident that damaged his right--aka "solo"--hand. His former employer, jazz singer Lonnie Cole, isn't doing too well either. Although Lonnie has just collaborated on a promising crossover album with a country and western star, Lonnie has received an envelope of photos that show him and the C & W man in compromising positions at a wild party. A note enclosed with the prints names Evan as the go-between to carry $1 million to the villainous photographer. Though insisting that he's not involved in the scheme, Evan grudgingly agrees to act as an amateur investigator and warily undertakes his new role, sticking with it even after he's hit on the head and pushed, unconscious, into a marina. Moody creates a tangle of clues and motives that Evan determinedly untangles despite his lack of PI experience. Jazz fans hoping for descriptions of artistry will find workaday musicians instead, but Moody's portrayals of the backstabbing music industry and a royalties scam ring true.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
A popular jazz pianist until his right hand was damaged in an auto accident, Evan Horne now writes the occasional critical essay while undergoing physical therapy and adjusting to the idea that he might never play professionally again. His association with Lonnie Cole, "the King of Soul," ended prior to the accident, but they are brought together again when a blackmailer threatening to ruin the reputations of Cole and Country-Western star Charlie Crisp insists that Horne serve as go-between for the million-dollar payoff. After the money is stolen from him, the pianist's risky quest for the culprit takes him--and the reader--deep into the nonperforming side of the music industry. Narrated by Horne, this first novel is a fast-paced, easy-to-read tale of amateur detection.
- V. Louise Saylor, Eastern Washington Univ. Lib., Cheney
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.