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by Kelly Lange
Warner Books, July 2003
320 pages
ISBN: 089296751X

Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

Isn't it great when you try an author for the first time and really enjoy them? That's how I feel about Kelly Lange after reading Dead File, the second Maxi Poole mystery.

Maxi, a TV News reporter and co-anchor working in L.A., is assigned to cover the death of glamorous local business woman Gillian Rose, found dead in her office at Rose Industries, a multi million pound company specialising in dietary supplements. 

Maxi had met and interviewed Gillian and her husband Carter a few times and thus has somewhat exclusive access to both the company premises and the story. Making her way rapidly to the penthouse suite using the executive lift, she arrives in time for her cameraman to shoot some secret footage of Gillian's body which, not being suitable for broadcast, is set aside in the Dead File. But something bothers Maxi about what she saw; Gillian's famously blue eyes looked brown.

Maxi is not convinced by the original police conclusion of a natural death, and nor is Gillian's philandering husband Carter who asks her to look further into the case, when she can fit it in between assignments. There are plenty of suspects, not least Carter himself, his elegant PA and mistress, and another businessman interested in taking over the company. And when a shooting claims another victim in Gillian's office, its clear to Maxi that Gillian's death was murder.

Meanwhile Maxi is also helping a colleague with a new book and embarking on a relationship with another reporter who has been posted abroad, and this adds great interest and a touch of romance to her story.

Dead File is a light glamorous fast paced read, which I enjoyed enormously and recommend highly. My only criticism is that (in the advance copy at least) it appears to refer in some detail to events in the previous book, THE REPORTER. I would prefer that these references had been less specific so that reading the books out of order wouldn't remove what seems to be the conclusion of book one, so I'd suggest starting there.

Reviewed by Bridget Bolton, July 2003

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Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)

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