Renowned mystery author Carol Higgins Clark’s detective heroine Regan Reilly appears once again in Popped, published by Pocket Books, copyright 2004.
One of the subjects that Carol Higgins Clark focuses on is the adventure of ballooning which is to my amazement a safer method of travel than cars, trains, buses, or even airplanes. The landings can be fairly rough, bouncing off the ground in a wicker basket for ten minutes would be a very frightening part of the trip, but not so terribly dangerous as a car crash.
With that in mind Clark takes us to Las Vegas, Nevada where Regan Reilly, to assist her friend Danny Madley, takes a plane from Los Angeles to help him produce a pilot show of a reality television series that features couples who wish to renew their wedding vows. The winning couple will be aloft in a balloon when they reclaim their commitment to each other. The lucky couple, upon a successful renewal in the balloon, will receive a million dollars in cash. Someone is trying to stop this process by sabotaging Danny’s making of the dramatic documentary, that he has named: Love Above Sea Level, that could give him recognition on the cable channel that sponsors the show.
Someone is sabotaging his production of his new documentary based on the people who love ballooning and the construction of these portals to the skies and the freedom of flight. Danny hires Regan, his old high school sweetheart, to investigate and possibly find out who is the one that is interfering with his production. Regan delves into this project with enthusiasm and uses all her resources, only to discover there are many suspects who would have reason to see Danny fail. She also finds that Danny’s production is in competition with another cable show which is a sitcom entitled: Take Me Higher.
At this point we are introduced to several people who quite possibly have motives. There is Victor who has been Danny’s trusted and reliable right hand man for several years, primarily involving secretarial skills that are needed to promote a television series. It could also be Bubbles Ferndale, an old flame who does well at cards, or the cameraman who would rather be riding a longboard. Danny’s ex-girlfriend Honey who was a showgirl in Vegas, is also a suspect, along with Lucille, who was a card dealer and Honey’s best friend. The list of people who would have reason to see Danny fail at this venture is long and involves many people. Regan has a lot to do in this very suspenseful and thrilling novel.
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