There’s Something in a Sunday

(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

Employed by All-Soul’s Law Cooperative in San Francisco, Sharon McCone takes on a surveillance job as a favor for one of her boss’s friends, Rudy Goldring. She spends a weekend following a young man as he visits plants shops and botanical gardens and notices his growing frustration and anger as he appears not to find what he is looking for. The following day she arrives at Goldring’s office to report on the young man’s activities. Not finding him at his office, she is about to ring the doorbell to the upstairs flat when she is practically run over by a young woman rushing out the door. McCone goes into the flat with the frightened woman and finds Goldring murdered, bludgeoned to death.

From this beginning, McCone finds herself drawn into a case that takes her from a ranch southeast of San Francisco to the extravagant home of a neurotic yuppie activist in the Haight-Ashbury district to the makeshift shack of homeless bums in Golden Gate Park.

Throughout the novel, the reader is treated to McCone’s insights on humanity, the perspective of a tough, lonely, and aloof person, a misfit. McCone reports on the hopeless lives of the homeless and the hypocrisy of yuppie activists and their selfish causes; she watches her friends turn to alcohol in despair and tries to help them in her fumbling way. In McCone’s world, people are trapped in broken, destructive relationships, and stupid violence is merely part of the landscape. Some Sundays are better than others, however, and good weather and a finished case can bring out a renewed sense of optimism and humor and an opportunity to have a good day.