Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Bits and Pieces-Annette Mahon

Bits and Pieces
Annette Mahon
Five Star, Jan 2010, $25.95
ISBN: 9781594148453

In Scottsdale, Arizona, an explosion in their home kills Kate Upland and her five-year-old twin daughters. The police believe Kate’s husband, an Iraq veteran suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, killed his family as Kenny is an explosives expert.

Six months later, Senior Guild elderly quilter Clare Patterson sees Kenny featured on TV’s Wanted Criminals and knows him from St. Rose bazaars when he and his three females would attend; now she recognizes him at a Big-mart. Clare calls her St. Rose quilting friend Maggie Browne while following Kenny as he leaves town. When Clare crashes near his rustic hideaway, Kenny rescues her. He persuades her he may suffer from PTSD, but would never harm his family.

The third St. Rose Quilting Bee cozy (see A Phantom Death and An Ominous Death) is an interesting mystery that starts with a whisper, but never gets much louder as the action is limited for the most part. The cast is solid especially the lead trio of Maggie, Clare and Kenny as he pleads his defense to the two women that he did not kill his family. Although more a character study of a PTSD veteran than a whodunit (if not him), fans will enjoy Kenny making a case that he is innocent.

Harriet Klausner