No Broken Hearts (A Lauren Atwill Mystery)
by Sheila York
Review by Mel Jacob
Five Star Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9781432829148
Date: 24 September 2014 List Price $25.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Temporarily assigned to a B studio to write a treatment for a new movie, Lauren Atwill is anything but happy. However, the task of bringing a gritty novel to the screen and doing so for the adult debut of a young star offers plenty of challenge. Lauren also prays that no dead body turns up as one or more has in the past while she is at the new studio. Then, one does.
Lauren know the gritty novel she is assigned to prepare for the screen will never make it past censors and requires extensive editing and rewriting to stay within the guidelines. The novel has many women of easy virtue, none of them suitable for a young ingénue. The aging romantic lead presents no problem but adding a love story does. Even the dialogue in the novel will have to be edited.
A young man at the new studio volunteers to help and is assigned the task of finding a copy of the books and pasting the pages into frames in a notebook. However, she has no idea he also deals in drugs and blackmail.
Long an admirer of the new picture's aging romantic star, she feels compelled to investigate when the body is found at his home. He had asked her to stop by after a party at the studio head's home. No Broken Hearts is the fourth mystery featuring Hollywood screenwriter Lauren Atwell and her boyfriend. It captures Hollywood of the 1940s, although much of it smacks more of the 1930s with lots of noir touches.
The convoluted mystery will please York fans. With enough suspects and motives, only the most avid readers will guess the murderer's identity. Some may wonder whether Lauren will be able to continue a screenwriting career after being associated with so many murders.