"Judge Deborah Knott has a severe case of anxiety in the final days before her late December nuptials to Deputy Sheriff Dwight Bryant. Her calendar is booked solid with receptions and parties, last-minute details, and family obligations. There is absolutely no way she can fit a homicide case into her schedule." "Nevertheless, when a friend and colleague is shot on the icy drive home and Dwight becomes the lead detective on the case, Deborah is immediately involved. Issues of ethics and confidentiality suddenly face her ... right on the next pillow." "Renovations to the house where the newlyweds will live are shockingly behind schedule - and, as the clock ticks down, Deborah has serious doubts her rowdy brothers will finish the new construction in time. Meanwhile, her sisters-in-law are giving her etiquette advice, her maid of honor is so pregnant she may deliver during the ceremony, and somehow, Deborah must find a way to connect with her wary young stepson-to-be. And as if things are not already hectic enough, two law students turn up and demand that she help them stop the execution of an innocent woman - one who is scheduled to die in less than a month." Now Deborah is in danger of losing sight of what really matters - the big, brown-eyed man who's about to say "I do." But just when she thinks she's finally got order in the court and in her life, fate has one more surprise in store.
At the start of Maron's first-rate 11th Deborah Knott mystery (after 2004's High Country Fall), the judge and her fianc?, sheriff deputy Dwight Bryant, are distracted from their impending nuptials by a fatal car crash involving assistant D.A. Tracy Johnson. When it turns out that someone shot Johnson as she was driving, Deborah and Dwight become involved in a murder investigation that will uncover a web of crime and corruption in Colleton County, N.C. Meanwhile, members of Deborah's large, extended family, among other warm Southern characters, hurry to complete the renovations on Deborah's old farmhouse and to prepare, celebrate and sometimes complicate the upcoming wedding. When two young students approach Deborah about a death-row prisoner who they think is innocent, she can't resist helping. In contrast to the image of the ideal woman described in the quotes from the Victorian etiquette book that head each chapter, the realistic, contemporary Deborah, an expert at multitasking, handles all challenges with wit, intelligence and sensitivity. Agent, Vicky Bijur. (Aug.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Grand Central Publishing
August 24, 2005
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