Magnolias, Moonlight, and Murder
Kensington, Apr 2009, $22.00
In North Dawkins, Georgia, military spouse Ellie Avery, her Air Force pilot husband Mitch and their two preschool kids Livvy and Nathan have moved to a complex close to Taylor Air Force Base. While walking their dog Rex Rottweiler, Ellie finds bones in a nearby mostly ignored cemetery that was obviously disturbed by a recent storm.
Ellie believes the remains belong to vanished reporter Jodi Lockworth, who was the previous resident of their new home. However, instead of someone missing less than a year, the skeleton is identified as two people sharing the same grave: WWI veteran Albert Chauncey who died in 1919, and African-American youngster William Nash who disappeared in 1955. Ellie investigates what happened to Jodi and Nash; not understanding the peril she places herself and her two children in from a killer watching her every move and attending a party she is hosting.
The fourth Mom Zone mystery (see STAYING HOME IS A KILLER, MOVING IS MURDER and GETTING AWAY IS DEADLY) is a lighthearted amateur sleuth cozy starring a brave woman who like most military spouses is used to taking charge of the home-front. The story line is fast-paced and the look back to 1919 and 1955 add historical perspective to the mystery. Although Ellie seems to trip over corpses regardless of what city she is in, fans will enjoy her steel magnolia resolve while also appreciate her party tips.