Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The Plot Sickens - and So Does Alison

Re: Cha Cha Cha by Jane Heller

The subject of recently murdered author Melanie Moloney’s tell-all book, Senator Alistair Downs, was on the surface a great guy - a former dance instructor who made it big in Hollywood and later became a respected U.S. Senator.

But Alison has stumbled upon Melanie’s notes for the book, which state that Senator Downs was part of Senator Joe McCarthy’s witch-hunting committee in the 1950’s and was supplying names of supposed ‘Communist sympathizers’ to McCarthy. The notes have information that Downs was also a secret member and active supporter of white supremacist groups. Alison is mortified by these revelations.

Alison also finds out (through the book notes) that Downs had a girlfriend back in the old days whom he promised to marry, but then backed out on her and married someone else. The unknown girlfriend moved on with her life, got married, had children and then moved to the same community that Downs himself moved to - Layton. Downs and the girlfriend rekindled their romance and secretly kept seeing each other even while both were married. The woman thought Downs would leave his wife for her, but alas he never did.

Then Cullie finds some old photos of Downs and the girlfriend dancing, and Alison thinks the girlfriend looks a lot like her mother. She is astounded when she realizes it IS her mother in those pictures. When she puts two and two together, Alison is sickened when she realizes that her mother has been carrying on with Senator Downs all these years.

And that makes Alison’s mother a suspect in Melanie Moloney’s murder because Melanie’s book would have exposed that sordid affair.