Thursday, March 8, 2012

Dolled Up for Murder-Jane K. Cleland

Dolled Up for Murder

Jane K. Cleland

Minotaur, Mar 27 2012, $24.99

ISBN 9781250001849

In Rocky Point, New Hampshire, antiques dealer Josie Prescott is showing her friend financial investor Alice Michaels her latest acquisition, a doll collection estimated at $40K. Alice tells Josie she is worried that she and others at ADM Financial Advisors, Inc. will soon be arrested by the DA for running a Ponzi’s scheme. Not long afterward Alice leaves Prescott’s Antiques and Auctions only to be shot to death in the parking lot while Josie watches in horror.

Not long after the homicide, a kidnapper abducts Josie’s employee Eric. They demand Josie turn over her new doll collection if she wants her assistant back. Inside a classic Chatty Cathy doll with the mini-phonograph removed Josie finds a rare Civil War currency. Police Chief Ellis Hunter investgates the murder while reporter Wes Smith, who broke the Ponzi scheme accusation, does likewise; as does Josie.

The latest Josie Prescott antiques mystery (see Deadly Threads) is a superb whodunit with competing inquiries. Fast-paced from the opening murder scene until the final confrontation, the twisting storyline grips the reader throughout as Josie is reminded of her late dad’s advice on trust.

Harriet Klausner

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