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BONEFIRE OF THE VANITIES by Carolyn Haines

BONEFIRE OF THE VANITIES

By Carolyn Haines

Pub Date: June 19th, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-312-64187-0
Publisher: Minotaur

A much loved cat stands to inherit billions.

Marjorie Littlefield, who’s getting on in years, refuses to leave her fortune to her son Chasley because she believes that he may have caused the drowning death of his sister Mariam when they were kids. Did he? Eager to find out for certain, Marjorie falls under the sway of a mother-and-daughter duo who claim they can call up spirits at Heart’s Desire, their well-guarded retreat. They promise to rouse Mariam at a séance so that Marjorie can ask her directly what Chasley did or didn’t do. A lot of humbug, think Marjorie’s friends, who ask Sarah Booth Delaney and her best pal Tinkie (Bones of a Feather, 2011, etc.) to investigate, a mission that requires them to gain entrance to the compound by masquerading as Marjorie’s personal maids. They snoop around the other guests and antagonize the resident staff, which includes a starchy butler with kinky sexual proclivities and a cook who brandishes carving knives with the panache of an assassin. After a kitchen maid and a guest are murdered and Empress Joséphine wafts by, but not Mariam, Sarah Booth’s fiance, Graf, and Tinkie’s husband, Oscar, lie their way onto the premises to help them out. Lots of things will go bump in the night before the secret that demanded two die within two days is revealed and Marjorie disinherits her cat, who has fallen in love with Sarah Booth’s fiance.

Tinkie has all the best moves, but Jitty, the spirit only Sarah Booth can see, has the best disguises.