Saturday, 7 November 2015

Charlie Lampton was a star; Master of the House and as he proclaimed on stage, ‘the best innkeeper in town,’ but he was a slave to his destiny as he lost his wife through a ruptured marriage, his house through the pressure of a massive mortgage and everything he owned to the hands of thieves. With life at its lowest things were destined to get worse when his best friend and theatrical understudy died in suspicious circumstances. It was then a chance meeting with retired Sydney police detective Stephen Haynes restored Charlie’s faith in human nature as the two work together to salvage love and logic from the shattered remains of a brilliant career. It all happens Downtown Sydney - The Rocks - Circular Quay - Stephen Haynes, a top police officer whose overindulgence in everything resulted in him degenerating to a high degree, returns to Sydney after a rehabilitating experience on the hills of Tibet. His double agenda has him in town to sell his assets and reunite with his daughter for her twenty first birthday. The indiscretions of earlier times have been lessons in life for Steve from which he has learned well and the years spent on the slopes of the Himalayas have fashioned him into a new and wiser person. Now he is in control to consolidate his relationship with his daughter, sell his property and return to Tibet. At breakfast he meets Charlie Lampton, thespian, who has a leading role in the top musical production in Sydney. Charlie intends to quit the show at the end of the season when it moves to Perth; which is now. There are too many ghosts in Perth for Charlie. Steve and Charlie strike up a sound relationship and Steve learns of the misfortunes that have befallen the actor. His best friend, and understudy, Leslie Due has gone missing from his home in mysterious circumstances and Charlie’s actress wife has run away to New Zealand with her leading man. Charlie’s house has been burgled and everything he owned has been taken; even his car from the garage. He is left only with the clothes he wears. Steve Haynes explains to Charlie it is only a matter of time before all these problems will be solved by the police and those responsible taken to task; except for the wife problem which is a matter of the heart. Charlie tells Steve he has little faith in police methods for there has been a nil result until now. Steve decides to help Charlie when Leslie Due’s broken body is recovered from the motorway and is placed in intensive care. Leslie Due’s daughter arrives from London and it is her decision to terminate the life support which sustains her father. The story takes a three way split with Steve reconciling with his first wife and mother of his daughter. Steve solves the intricate case of home burglary and theft; and Charlie becoming smitten by Lisa Due, daughter of Leslie. Charlie and Lisa first meet at her father’s funeral where he is amazed to learn of her true identity which is Leanne Page, the leading film actress and Oscar winner. Charlie is smitten by Leanne Page; movie star supreme. Steve Haynes becomes further involved in the investigation of the murder of Leslie Due and with his expertise is able to end the inquiry with a satisfactory conclusion. Follow Steve as he uses advanced skills of the mind to pick apart the seams of two ingenious conspiracies. Strong characters and two crafty plots intermingle in this Sydney-side mystery. Here we have a stirring story of the heart, overshadowed by murder and intrigue in the shadows of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Opera House. Charlie Lampton, star of the show, answers the cries of his heart. He forsakes his place in the footlights in the musical extravaganza of the century and surrenders a place in the cast; a role which he declares is, ‘Something to Kill For.’ For Charlie, a cat looking at a king, there is hope of a fresh start and new life in the responses of movie queen Leanne Page; a fresh start too for Steve Haynes. Maybe he won’t return to Tibet. ( US$2.99)

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