Murder on K Street
Ballantine, Oct 30 2007, $24.95
U.S. Senator Lyle Simmons is considered by the pundits as one of the leading candidates for president. However, he soon has a different problem outside of politics to deal with when he comes home following a fundraiser. His wife Jeanette lies on the floor of their foyer; someone brutally murdered her. Capital Police Detective Charles Chang leads the official investigation with the media spotlight following every step he makes.
Clues send Chang in the direction of K Street where the senior senator from Illinois has close ties with lobbyists who provide him with plenty of campaign funding. However Chang also finds the street is close lipped to outsiders, even cops on official inquiries and corruption and lies are the norm. Under the press’ persistent digging, the perfect Simmons’s marriage suddenly has cracks and holes that make it look as if it was tied together by White House ambition only. Meanwhile Simmons’s friend, retired detective Phil Rotondi wonders whether he should come clean with what he knows about the relationship between Lyle and Jeanette; although he admits to himself he still has sour grapes having lost her to him when they attended college together.
When the story line focuses on K Street, readers obtain an interesting look at how much influence is bought and sold as there is a lobbying stock market selling and buying specialized commodities. However, the constant flashbacks to college are a distraction that slows down the present murder mystery, which is too bad as this Capital Crimes entry had possibilities for an insightful relevant thriller if the plot concentrated on MURDER ON K STREET.