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The Shape of Dread Hardcover – November, 1989
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From Publishers Weekly
With this extraordinarily complex, gripping novel, Muller surpasses the previous stories of Sharon McCone, San Francisco-based private eye. Sharon relates details in the case that takes her to meet Bobby Fisher in San Quentin where he's doomed to the gas chamber for the murder of Tracy Kostakos, a popular comic. Hoping to save Bobby, the investigator questions the owners of the Club Comedie, Jay Larkey and his partner, Rob Soriano, Soriano's wife and everyone else who had known Tracy, including her parents, fiance and roommate. The consensus is that the witty monologuist paradoxically lacked a sense of humor but had created hilarious routines by cruelly parodying people close to her. Digging deeper into the said already, ok? entertainer's past, Sharon unearths evidence that she may pay for with her own life. Evoking the atmosphere of San Francisco's special places, Muller makes one feel particularly the "shape of dread" on death row and provokes thought on the finality of capital punishment.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Top Customer Reviews
Largely, though, I keep coming back because Muller writes entertaining stories. This one is no exception. In fact, I found this one to be somewhat better than her average story. Some, while still fun to read, aren't too difficult when it comes to putting your finger on the murderer. But in this one there were plenty of twists and turns before the story came to its final conclusion. At times, there was even some doubt about the crime. We have a convicted felon on death row but is catually Tracy dead? Or had she simply chosen to disappear? Or is somebody dead, but not Tracy?
My general rating for Sharon McCone mysteries is four stars in Amazon's system. This one I rate 4+.
This is a short read, a good whodunit where past sins have now stepped forward to claim their retribution. Interesting insight into the world of standup comedy.
I like mysteries and I tried hard to like this book, but the further I got into it, the less I liked it. There’s a fairly decent detective story here, but it just couldn’t hold my interest. Way too wordy and politically correct for me. I read about 75% before deciding that I wasn’t enjoying the story at all and gave it up.
Muller also spent time in the book delving into the personal dramas of the All Souls employees. It was interesting getting a fuller view of the characters.