When Fred Masters and Miranda Jay are found dead in a New York apartment, the official verdict is murder-suicide. Several individuals find this conclusion doubtful and begin their own investigations of the deaths. Chief among the investigators is Los Angeles Police Department Detective Lou Salerno, who is exploring a connection between an unsolved homicide and the Masters-Jay tragedy. Television anchorwoman Claire Avery thinks she has the inside track, while author Gordon Grayson, in whose apartment the couple died, has signed a large contract to write a biography of Miranda, who seems to have had virtually no past before she appeared, at the age of seventeen, on the yacht of her first lover, munitions manufacturer Victor Lenrahan. Cutting back and forth between the story of Miranda’s life and the investigation of her death, Gwen Davis keeps her readers guessing until the final chapters when the two stories converge in a shocking denouement.
Much of the fun of this novel lies in the resemblance between its characters and situations and events in the newspaper headlines. Miranda seems modeled on Vickie Morgan, the murdered mistress of Alfred Bloomingdale; another character, Bunyan Reis, is an obvious composite of several waspish members of the smart set--notably including Truman Capote. Replete with such real-life parallels (one plot line concerns Defense Department contract irregularities that echo the kind of investigation which NASA is currently undergoing) and well supplied with steamy sex, SILK LADY is a stylish visit to the underside of the glamorous world of art, big business, and government.