Murder in Georgetown

(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

When Potamos begins questioning Valerie Frolich’s friends about her murder, he stumbles onto a national security conspiracy at the highest levels of government, a conspiracy that its perpetrators intend to preserve, if necessary, over Joe’s dead body.

At one critical point in his career as a reporter, Potamos ran afoul of a very powerful Washington journalist by refusing to compromise his scruples. Now, relegated to the police beat, he discovers that Valerie Frolich kept a diary of her powerful father’s shady dealings and intrigues, and that the man who demoted him might be involved in her murder. Then the diary triggers another murder, and this time Potamos must struggle to preserve not only his integrity but his life. Ultimately, he is forced into a dangerous confrontation with some of the great power brokers of Washington, not only to find the truth but also to save the woman he loves.

Margaret Truman, daughter of former President Harry S Truman and author of a string of best-selling mysteries, has written her best novel to date. Critics who have previously objected that her stories lack “polish” should find little to criticize here. Her fairly large cast of characters is handled with skill, and she portrays the Washington political scene with the sure hand of an insider. Resisting the temptation to bog down the plot with meaningless political detail, she nevertheless conveys to the reader a very real sense of what Washington must be like at the highest levels of government and business. Truman never loses sight of the fact that the quest for power drives her plot, and perhaps it is because of this that the story works so well.

A selection of the Mystery Guild and a Literary Guild Alternate, this novel should exceed the popularity of Truman’s previous works.