Ben Abbott is back in StoneDust, a complex, richly plotted, and enthralling mystery that tests this witty, literate realtor and fledgling detective as never before.
The Fisks' weekend party, a "sleep-over" for select couples, remains the talk of the town long after Reg Hopkins' body turns up in an isolated covered bridge. For Reg may have paid the party a fleeting visit--before dying in a way everyone swears was impossible. Ben, who used to play backyard baseball with Reg and all the party guests, must take up the matter with a hometown cast of friends, foes, and family--including his ninety-year-old Aunt Connie, the rising politician and his sometime lover Vicky McLachlan, the comely and ambitious State Police Detective Marian Boyce, and a pair of deadly housebreakers. Soon everybody's getting much more in the way of kicks than they bargained for.
On target again, Edgar-nominee Scott (Many Happy Returns; HardScape) delivers another literate, witty and absorbing mystery starring Ben Abbott, the former Wall Street high-roller who, having done time for financial misdealing, now sells real estate in his hometown of Newbury, Conn. Here Abbott calls on his self-described "half-assed" investigative skills to prove that a childhood friend did not die from a "hotload," a heroin overdose. When the coroner reports that heroin did indeed cause the death of Reg Hopkins, whose body was discovered on a covered bridge, Abbott focuses more on the why than the how of the man's demise. A lot of their old friends aren't talking. Among these are the couple who had a Jacuzzi party for a select group of Newbury's nouveaux riches the night Hopkins died. Hopkins was not invited-but was he the mystery party crasher? Setting this simmering tale of money, sex and drugs in picturesque Newbury, with its colonial homes, fine lawns and blooming azaleas, Scott creates a mixture guaranteed to hook new readers and bring old ones back for more.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Poisoned Pen Press
September 29, 2003
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