The Man Who Cancelled Himself

      David Handler

The Man Who Cancelled Himself

Hired by fallen television star Lyle Hudnut, whose career was shattered by scandal, writer Stewart Hoag reluctantly begins penning the actor's memoirs and learns a deadly truth about a network's secret practices. Reprint.

From Publishers Weekly

Great fun from Handler in his sixth Stewart Hoag adventure (The Boy Who Would Be F. Scott Fitzgerald won an Edgar in 1991), despite its overwrought climax and a villain whom psychologically hip readers will spot before the actual unmasking. Former literary boy-wonder Hoagy has sunk to ghosting the showbiz autobio of children's TV star Lyle ("Uncle Chubby") Hudnut, who's attempting a comeback after an arrest for indecent exposure in a Times Square porn theater. Lyle, a 300-pound bundle of crazed energy, ego and cruelty, is sure that someone-or the world-is out to get him and believes the book will generate sympathy. There are personal complications: Lyle's co-star is his ex-wife; the network's executive producer is an ex-girlfriend; his current fiancee is the show's producer, a spot coveted by an assistant producer; and the show's writers are angling for control. A fire on the set, food poisoning and the bizarre murder of the newest cast member wreak havoc. A subplot involves Hoagy's celebrity ex-wife, who's pregnant and won't identify the father, but the best part of the book is Hoagy's gimlet-eyed observations of the fierce, delicious and dizzy infighting in Sitcom Land.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Handler (The Boy Who Never Grew Up, LJ 9/1/92) presents celebrity ghostwriter Steward Hoag who, on hand to author a book about television comic Lyle Hudnut, finds himself in the midst of mayhem and murder after Lyle's arrest in a porno movie theater. Stewart's dog, Lulu, and his ex-wife, actress Merilee, complicate matters.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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    The Man Who Couldn't Miss

      David Handler

The Man Who Couldn't Miss

In the next novel in David Handler's Edgar award-winning series, Stewart "Hoagy" Hoag and his beloved basset hound, Lulu, investigate a murder in a fabled Connecticut summer playhouse

Hollywood ghostwriter Stewart "Hoagy" Hoag has chronicled the rise, fall, and triumphant return of many a celebrity. At last he's enjoying his own, very welcome second act. After hitting a creative slump following the success of his debut novel, Hoagy has found inspiration again. Ensconced with his faithful but cowardly basset hound, Lulu, on a Connecticut farm belonging to his ex-wife, Oscar-winning actress Merilee Nash, he's busy working on a new novel. He's even holding out hope that he and Merilee might get together again. Life is simple and fulfilling—which of course means it's time for complications to set in....

When the police call to ask if he knows the whereabouts of a man named R.J. Romero, Hoagy learns of a dark secret from his ex-wife's past. It's already a stressful...

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    The Girl with Kaleidoscope Eyes

      David Handler

The Girl with Kaleidoscope Eyes

HARLAN COBEN calls it "One of my all-time favorite series! ...David Handler is so good at writing one smart, funny page-turner after another that he makes it look easy."

Fans of JANET EVANOVICH and CARL HIAASEN, get ready. If you haven't yet discovered wisecracking sleuth Stewart "Hoagy" Hoag and his faithful basset hound Lulu, you're in for a sharp, hilarious treat...

Once upon a time, Hoagy had it all: a hugely successful debut novel, a gorgeous celebrity wife, the glamorous world of New York City at his feet. These days, he scrapes by as a celebrity ghostwriter. A celebrity ghostwriter who finds himself investigating murders more often than he'd like.
And once upon a time, Richard Aintree was the most famous writer in America — high school students across the country read his one and only novel, a modern classic on par with The Catcher in the Rye. But...

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    The Woman Who Fell From Grace

      David Handler

The Woman Who Fell From Grace

Ghostwriting a sequel to Oh, Shenandoah, Hoagy believes he has landed an opportunity that will re-launch his career, until he is confronted with an otherworldly collaborator, family skeletons, and a handful of murders. Reissue. PW.

From Publishers Weekly

In his first hardcover appearance, novelist/ghost writer Hoagy Hoag, seen last in The Man Who Would Be F. Scott Fitzgerald , takes on the assignment of a lifetime--to write the sequel to the most popular novel in publishing history, Oh, Shenandoah . Alma Glaze, author of the sweeping tale of the Revolutionary War, was killed in an accident 50 years earlier, right after the equally popular film of the book was completed. When Hoagy agrees to the project, he takes on some alarming partners: domineering Mavis Glaze, Alma's sole heir; her twin brothers, Frederick and Edward, mostly dependent on their sister for financing; and nubile Mercy Glaze, Mavis's only child and heir to the Shenandoah fortune. The family housekeeper is found dead after suggesting that the mysterious death of one of the stars, which also occurred right after the film's completion, was murder. Despite the displeasure of the local sheriff, Mercy's fiance, Hoagy investigates. As he digs for ancient secrets and copes with another murder and an alienated young orphan, preparations for a vast anniversary celebration swirl around him. Handler's breezy, unpretentious and warm-hearted hero provides a breath of fresh air in a world of investigative angst.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews

Edgar-winning Handler's hardcover debut--another headliner in Doubleday's new Perfect Crime series--takes his ghostwriter-sleuth Stewart Hoag to Staunton, Virginia, to work on the sequel to beloved historical blockbuster Oh, Shenandoah, at the request of the family of author Alma Glaze, killed 50 years ago in a car accident. Sound familiar? Well, Alma's diary of the filming of Oh, Shenandoah puts Hoagy on the trail of a Hollywood murder and coverup, and suggests that Alma's own death was no accident. And while he's trying to sell the Glaze family (smooth, elderly twins Edward and Frederick and their crazy sister Mavis) on his theory, the present-day cast starts to get killed off too. Full of incredible coincidences and too cute by half--but Hoagy's laid-back humor is easy to take, and the convoluted mystery will keep you guessing midway through the finale. -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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    The Lavender Lane Lothario

      David Handler

The Lavender Lane Lothario

Every year, the Gant family performs an annual ritual desecrating the tomb of Aurora Bing. The Gants have held a grudge against the legendary silent film star for almost eighty years, but for Shem Gant and his son, things have become personal. Aurora's only grandchild, Hubie Swope, has shut down Shem's notoriously rowdy beachfront bar, and refuses to allow The Pit to reopen until Shem undertakes expensive upgrades. This means war. And when The Pit catches fire and Hubie Swope's charred remains are found in the rubble, it also means murder.

Who killed Hubie Swope? Crime-fighting duo Mitch and Des have no idea. Not only are Shem and his son prime suspects, but so are the women in Hubie's life. To their surprise, Mitch and Des discover that Dorset's building inspector, a quiet widower who repaired cuckoo clocks in his little house on Lavender Lane, was secretly juggling four girlfriends at once. And then there's Gaylord Holland, a builder who had a beef of his own with...

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    The Boy Who Never Grew Up

      David Handler

The Boy Who Never Grew Up

THIS PEN FOR HIRE
Once Stewart "Hoagy" Hoag was the toast of the publishing world and husband of luscious Broadway beauty Merilee Nash. But fame and fortune left him as swiftly and surely as Merilee. Now Hoagy ekes out a living as a ghostwriter of celebrity memoirs and a reluctant amateur detective, aided by his cat-food-eating basset hound named Lulu.
IF LIFE WERE LIKE THE MOVIES, STEWART HOAG WOULD BE OUT OF WORK....
But for better or worse there are enough unhappy endings in Hollywood to keep Hoagy gainfully employed -- with work left over for hatchet-wielding hacks like Cassandra Dee. Hoagy and Cassandra are working both ends of the celebrity divorce of the decade, the breakup that makes Donald and Ivana look like puppy love. In one corner, Hollywood gee-whiz kid Matthew Wax, the director whose celluloid schmaltz has made him a multimillionaire; in the other, his beautiful leading lady Pennyroyal Brim. Hoagy's got a herculean task ahead of him in trying to dig up the truth about the House of Wax--Matthew is surrounded by the false fronts of his fictional all-American vision. But this time reality can't be held at bay with a nicely scripted happy ending, and soon Matthew Wax's life is looking less like It's a Wonderful Life -- and more like Nightmare on Elm Street.

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    The Man Who Loved Women to Death

      David Handler

The Man Who Loved Women to Death

A serial killer is showing Hoagy his novel in progress--and every chapter is murder....

Once Stewart "Hoagy" Hoag was the toast of the publishing world and the husband of luscious Broadway beauty Merilee Nash. Now, reunited with Merilee in proud parenthood, Hoagy ghosts celebrity memoirs to pay the rent. And solves the occasional murder, aided by Lulu, his anchovy-eating basset hound.

A ghostwriter usually chooses his clients, but this time Hoagy finds himself chosen. His new client calls himself the Answer Man, and he's mailing Hoagy anonymous installments of his work in progress. Each one narrates the stalking and strangling of a lovely young woman--and it's no sooner in Hoagy's mailbox than the cops find her corpse: branded with orange-lipstick question marks. Hoagy's deadly pen pal--bent on a megabestseller and a movie deal--is seeking his literary advice, and Hoagy's being tagged by both the police and the press as a twisted killer's go-between.

Hoagy has some questions of his own for the elusive Answer Man. But the closer he gets to the truth, the less he likes what he finds. For Hoagy fears the prolific killer may be someone too close to him for comfort. And that the next chapter of the Answer Man's grisly opus might be Hoagy's last.

From Library Journal

Ghost-writer Stewart Hoag confronts the biggest challenge of both his writing and sleuthing careers. A calculating serial killer in New York writes about his crimes as they occur and sends the chapters to Hoag, his "collaborator." Pressured by police and press, Hoag suspects an old friend. Fun reading from the author of The Girl Who Ran Off with Daddy (LJ 2/1/96).
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Nearly 30 years ago, three boys became friends: unassuming, nerdy Ezra Spooner; Stewart "Hoagy" Hoag, who became a famous writer; and Tuttle Cash, the golden boy who had everything. The three eventually drifted apart, but they're about to be reunited in a most chilling manner. Hoagy recently received the first chapter of an unsolicited manuscript from an unidentified author. The chapter is a daring, violent, menacing, and brilliant story about a serial killer who befriends a young woman who works in a pet store and then strangles her with a lamp cord. A few days later, to Hoagy's horror, the body of a young woman--a pet-store employee--is found. The victim's physical description, the modus operandi, and the location of the body are identical to the murder described in the chapter Hoagy received. Teaming up with his old nemesis, hip, hyper NYPD Lieutenant Romaine Very, Hoagy struggles to make sense of the chilling case and soon finds himself suspecting that one of his old pals may be the killer. Handler has written a sleek, sophisticated, over-the-top story that's filled with red herrings, laugh-aloud humor, and plenty of suspense. Four stars. Emily Melton

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    The Man Who Would Be F. Scott Fitzgerald

      David Handler

The Man Who Would Be F. Scott Fitzgerald

Hoagy tries to save a client from the deadly world of high-stakes publishingStewart Hoag knows how quickly fame can fade. The same critics who adored his first novel used his second for target practice, ending his literary career once and for all. To keep his basset hound fed, Hoagy ghostwrites memoirs for the rich, famous, and self-destructive. His newest subject reminds him all too much of himself. By the age of twenty, Cam Noyes is already being hailed as the next F. Scott Fitzgerald. Though he’s only published one book, Cam runs with the big boys: dating artists, trashing restaurants, and ending every night in a haze of tequila and cocaine. So glamorous is his lifestyle that he’s having trouble starting his second novel, forcing his agent to hire Hoagy to get the little genius working on a memoir instead. As Hoagy digs into the kid’s life story, he learns that New York publishing is even more cutthroat than he thought.

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    The Cold Blue Blood

      David Handler

The Cold Blue Blood

SUMMARY:
Mitch Berger, a top film critic with a major New York newspaper at a surprisingly young age, has become almost a recluse since his wife died one year ago. He spends his time secluded in his apartment or in the dark recesses of a screening room. Although he continues to dazzle moviegoers and the film elite with his criticisms, his editor and good friend is alarmed about him. As a scheme to pull him out of the doldrums of his grief, she gives him a non-film assignment - to do a color story on the wealthy and social homeowners on Connecticut's Gold Coast. It takes some doing, but in the end Mitch agrees.He is fortunate to find a cottage to rent on Big Sister, the absolute top-of-the-line private island outside the town of Dorset. His landlady, Dolly, is pleasant and friendly, but some of the other inhabitants of this small piece of land, although too well bred to come right out and say it, are not happy to have Mitch, born of parents only one generation away from Eastern Europe and raised on the city's pavements, arrive in their back yard. But Dolly, whose husband has recently left her, needs the money, and at least she is more than gracious. The discovery of a body during a bout of optimistic gardening in Dolly's back yard brings on the other main player - Lieutenant Desiree Mitry, one of only three women on the Connecticut State Police major crimes squad, the youngest of the three, and the only black. A dedicated officer, she is the terror of everyone who doesn't really want to give a home to one of her stray cats. She is, as well, a closet artist and a complicated and beautiful woman, and she intrigues Mitch from the start.

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