Susan Isaacs, whose romance novels (Shining Through, Almost Paradise) have brought her fame and fans, returns to mystery with Magic Hour. When movie producer Sy Spencer is murdered on the deck of his Southampton beach house during the filming of his latest project, Starry Night, the list of suspects is almost as short as the diminutive producer was. There is his embittered ex-wife, Bonnie Bernstein, a failed screenwriter; Lindsay Keefe, his current leading lady (on-screen and off), whose lackluster Starry Night performance has jeopardized the film; and Mikey LoTriglio, the Mafia investor who is deeply concerned about his $1 million.

Unfortunately, Magic Hour‘s snappy plot rests on the broad shoulders of an overbearing homicide cop named Steve Brady, who gums up the action by pausing frequently to assess his appeal to the women connected with the case. ”She lowered her head so I was looking down at her dark, shiny hair. Her breathing became quick, shallow. I knew I was getting to her. Not just the cop: the man.” Hey, how about importing one ofthose standard Isaacs heroes — intelligent, thoughtful, wonderful in every way — and letting him take the case? B

Magic Hour
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