Whacked with a lawn flamingo? A reporter wants to know--who killed with kitsch...
The rehabilitation of North Dakota Place is a feel-good story--the kind St. Louis City Gazette columnist Francesca Vierling likes to write. Grand houses restored to former glory. Pride in a neighborhood--and, like all good stories, this one has a hero, the woman who made it all happen, the city's guardian of good taste. Some call her a rehabbing saint, others a fanatic.
The first death on North Dakota Place was certainly shocking but not entirely unwelcome--after all, the victim was a cranky old man who had been painting his house purple. The second death, of a drug dealer, brings tacit approval--and growing suspicion. But all bets are off when another victim is found, a socialite unceremoniously whacked with a pink lawn flamingo. Now the neighbors want Francesca to investigate. But her boyfriend wants her to commit to marriage, not crime. Soon the gutsy reporter is experiencing a deepening personal crisis--and something more heinous than vinyl siding: the dark secrets of heart, home, and blighted dreams.
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July 12, 1999
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