Laurie Moran’s professional life is a success—her television show Under Suspicion is a hit, both in the ratings and its record of solving cold cases. But her romantic break from former host Alex Buckley has left her with on-air talent she can’t stand—Ryan Nichols—and a sense of loneliness, despite her loving family.
Now Ryan has suggested a new case. Three years ago, Virginia Wakeling, a member of the Board of Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and one of the museum’s most generous donors, was found in the snow, after being thrown from the museum’s roof on the night of its most celebrated fundraiser, the Met Gala. The leading suspect then and now is her much younger boyfriend and personal trainer, Ivan Gray.
Ivan runs a trendy, successful boutique gym called Punch—a business funded in no small part by the late Virginia—which happens to be the gym Ryan frequents. Laurie’s skepticism about the case is upended by a tip from her father’s NYPD connection, and soon Laurie realizes there are a bevy of suspects—including Virginia’s trusted inner circle.
As the Under Suspicion crew pries into the lives of a super wealthy real estate family with secrets to hide, danger mounts for several witnesses—and for Laurie.
The death of 68-year-old socialite Virginia Wakeling, who took a fatal fall off the roof of New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, propels bestseller Clark and Burke's tepid fourth novel featuring Laurie Morgan (after 2016's The Sleeping Beauty Killer). Three years after Virginia's death, Laurie, the producer of Under Suspicion, a TV show that examines cold cases, is pushed by host Ryan Nichols and studio head Brett Young into exploring it as a possible subject. Laurie has doubts because the case isn't really old enough to be considered cold, and Ryan, who pitches the idea, is friends with Ivan Gray, Virginia's boyfriend and the primary suspect. After Laurie listens to Ivan, considers the venue where Virginia was killed (an A-list do at the Met featuring an exhibit of gowns worn by first ladies), and makes a list of other possible suspects, she becomes more interested in proceeding. As Laurie follows a formulaic path to the truth, a constant undercurrent is her fractured romance with the show's former host, Alex Buckley, and the possibility of repairing it. Series fans will hope for a return to form next time. Agents: Bob Barnett and Deenen Howell, Williams & Connolly. \n