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What starts as the perfect day for a marriage soon deteriorates into a multi-pronged disaster. It will take all of Max Bittersohn's formidable skills as the world's greatest expert on art theft to get to the bottom of these nuptials-turned-nasty.
Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, Where's the Ax About to Fall? SARAH KELLING--The merry widow of Boston's Beacon Hill. She hopes her summer holiday will be interrupted by a marriage proposal, not stopped dead by murder. MAX BITTERSOHN--Art theft is his sleuthing specialty. He thinks June on the dunes might lead to a picture-perfect honeymoon, not to a stay in the local jail. ALICE BEAXITT--A mainstay of the yacht club crowd. She's an expert at tasty hors d'oeuvres and juicy gossip, and something she serves up may get her the ax. PETE LOMAX--A shady-looking assistant caretaker. He won't put his back into hard work, but he may turn his eye to valuable antiques. BRADLEY ROVEDOCK--Charming gentleman sailor from Sarah's past. He wants Sarah to spend the day at sea, and there's more on his mind than a tall ship and a star to steer her by. APPIE KELLING--A balmy branch on the Kelling family tree. Meddling in Sarah's love affairs may put her in the middle of a dangerous liaison.
17 short stories ... here's a grab bag full of this and that... different themes, different moods, different styles... some longer, some shorter, even a couple of real quickies for readers threatened by tidal waves or just looking to kill a little time while waiting for their bees to swarm.
Clucking like a mother hen, the farrier settled the enormous Balaclava. black massive poor cozily into the lap of her leather apron, picked up a sharp, short-bladed knife, and begun pairing at the edges with deft, quick flicks. Helen Marsh, Who had been Helen Marsh until a couple of months ago, stood as close as she dared, watching. She was still trying to learn her way around the sprawling complex on Balaclava Agriculture College, and the animal husbandry barns were her current field of investigation.
Each was anxious for a clear sighting. Rules demanded that each bird be positively identified by at least two members of the team. What judge was going to believe a snowy owl in Massachusetts in October without an oath sealed in blood by the entire group, or at least a reasonable facsimile thereof?
Sarah Kelling and her husband, Max Bittersohn, are drawn into a tangle of murderous events, courtesy of Sarah's eccentric family. Uncle Jeremy Kelling's friends Bill and Abigail Billingsgate are holding their annual Renaissance Revel at their sumptuous Romanesque abode in suburban Boston. But before the festivities begin, the Billingsgates' vintage 1927 New Phantom Rolls Royce disappears. Sarah and Max are asked to do some sleuthing during the affair and also to keep an eye on the remainder of the Billingsgate collection of vintage Rollses. But while morris dancers leap and ersatz peacock pie is consumed, the gatekeeper (appropriately attired in period costume, complete with Totschlager) is killed and left hanging from an oak tree. In addition, a priceless Silver Ghost auto has vanished, and Aunt Bodicea Kelling with it. Who's to blame? The gate was locked, the extensive security system was in operation, and the gravel driveway was left undisturbed. It seems an unsolvable riddle, but count on Max and Sarah to ferret out the astonishing facts. Once again, the Queen of the Whimsical Whodunit will delight her fans with adventures of the engaging and eccentric Kellings -most recently encountered in The Recycled Citizen
When a man dies of cyanide poisoning at a diner in Maine, no one believes it was accidental. Did he commit suicide, or did someone kill him? Professor Peter Shandy investigates.
Curiosity killed the proverbial cat...but in the case of the landlady's feline, it led to cold-blooded murder.
Fans of MacLeod will attest that this novel is the the ultimate in escapism. While Helen Shandy, wife of Peter, an agriculture professor, is roaming the countryside photographing antique weather vanes created by Praxiteles Lumpkin for a pamphlet to be issued by a historical society, she discovers that many of the treasures are being stolen by a gang of thieves. Helen decides to travel to Sasquamahoc, the site of another priceless Praxiteles, before the gang of thieves can reach it. While in Sasquamahoc, Helen and two women friends decide to go whale-watching when the vane snatchers take over the ship. Eventually, Helen and Peter piece together enough clues to uncover the thieves' ringleader and save the Lumpkins.
When a hired hand "accidentally" dies by quicklime, the local townsfolk blame an allegedly cursed Viking rune stone. But when Professor Peter Shandy is called to the scene, he's sure it's murder. His list of suspects--all with possible motives--includes a sharp-eyed antique dealer, a disreputable realtor, and a gaggle of people thirsty for the farm's sale!
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