Thursday, March 24, 2011

Dead by Midnight

Carolyn Hart's new mystery/thriller, Dead by Midnight, features recurring characters in the Death on Demand series, Annie and Max Darling. Max's ditzy mother, Laurel, is usually up to something that surprises and confounds Annie. In Dead by Midnight, Laurel is creating Cat Truth Posters which she wants hung in the bookstore. Annie, of course, thinks books should be the focus of the store, but the posters enchant her. The author describes one of Laurel's posters, which features a photograph of a cat:

. . . a silky furred, mitted, and bicolored Ragdoll stretched out on a red silk cushion, looking as comfy as Eva Longoria in a Hanes ad: Go with the Flow.

One of the posters points to a killer.

In Carolyn Hart's 21st Death on Demand mystery, Annie Darling, owner of the Death on Demand mystery bookstore in South Carolina, doesn't believe the official report concerning the suicide of her newest employee, Pat Merridew.

Merridew had been fired from her previous job with a law firm and her suspicious conduct prior to her death, coupled with a planned cruise to Alaska she couldn't afford, raises Annie's suspicions. So she and her husband Max decide to investigate.When a law partner in the firm the victim worked for is found shot to death, there are plenty of suspects, including the lawyer's sister. The Darlings are convinced that's she protecting the real killer and set out to prove it. 
The plot is well-paced and Max's mother lends plenty of humor to the plot. Bookstore enthusiasts and readers from all venues will love this latest Death on Demand mystery/thriller.
Carolyn Hart has won multiple Agatha, Anthony, and Macavity Awards. She's the creator of the Henrie O series, featuring a retired reporter, and the Bailey Ruth series, starring an impetuous, redheaded ghost. One of the founders of Sisters in Crime, she lives in Oklahoma City.

Dead at Midnight will be officially released on March 29, but can be preordered online.


Anne R. Allen said...

Nice review. I didn't know she was one of the founders of SinC! I'll have to check her out.

Jean Henry Mead said...

Thank you, Anne. She's one of my favorite authors.I'm sure you'll enjoy her books.

Jenny Bishop said...

I love Carolyn Hart's books, especially her Bailey Ruth novels. Dead at Midnight is on my to-read list.