No sooner is ex-surfer Am Caulfield made hotel detective at the posh Hotel California, than things go very wrong. A man leaps to his death, a stripper reports a theft, and a jealous husband commits a murder. Am has to solve all these crimes, plus one.
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Left in charge of La Jolla's venerable California Hotel by the weekend absence of his charmless boss--who's fired the chief of hotel security on his way out the door--assistant general manager Am Caulfield juggles an improbable bunch of ninnies and knaves. Conventioning contractor Tim Kelly has capped his evening on the town by jumping from his seventh-floor window (but did he jump?). Overendowed Las Vegas entertainer Kris Carr reports the theft of four gargantuan brassieres. Executive chef Marcel Charvet, who's finally found out what the staff mean when they say he's been serving road kill, vindictively prepares the real thing, opossum Meurtre de la Route, for an eminent food critic. And in addition to the everyday crises posed by the Whining Weintraubs and Mr. Harmon, the compulsive adulterator of liquor in the guest-room honor bars, estranged husband Carlton Smoltz has killed his wife and her lawyer-lover in 605 and then gone underground as one of 175 eponymous participants in the Bob Johnson Society--all of which makes more trouble for the actors trying to entertain the remaining Bob Johnsons by staging a Murder Mayhem Weekend. This waggish take on Grand Hotel reveals a new side--corny, but winsome--of the usually downbeat Russell (The Forest Prime Evil, 1992). Am seems poised for a series, though you've got to wonder what else could go wrong at the California. -- Copyright ©1994, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Publishers Weekly:
Russell ( The Forest Prime Evil ) launches this series with a book as light as a chocolate souffle--and about as filling. At San Diego's landmark hotel--readers may think of the Coronado, where Some Like It Hot was filmed--assistant general manager (AGM) Am Caulfield is forced by the nasty new GM to take on the job of head of security. The GM leaves for a long weekend with the hotel's owners and Am is quickly confronted with a suspicious suicide, the theft of a Las Vegas showgirl's customized ("Fifty-eight double F") bras and the knifing murders of a local lawyer and his unknown mistress. Also on his agenda is a convention of a few hundred members of the Bob Johnson society (all named Bob Johnson), a temperamental chef's serving of roadkill to a food critic and the daily downside of running a large hotel. Russell gets off plenty of one-liners in this unsubstantial offering and solves the various subplots (even the lingerie thief is caught). Amateur sleuth Am is fairly phlegmatic as well as unflappable, and the setting is mined for easy jokes rather than quirky, memorable characterization.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Mysterious Press, 1995. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110446403482
Book Description Mysterious Press, 1995. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. Brand New!. Bookseller Inventory # VIB0446403482
Book Description Mysterious Press. MASS MARKET PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0446403482 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.1097047