MAQUETTE FOR MURDER by Gretchen Sprague


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The good news is that the scale model of Williamsburg fabric sculptor Hannah Gold’s latest installation, Love, is an unqualified success when she unveils it to a select group of friends and rivals. The bad news is that a few hours later, Hannah’s in the hospital with a concussion after being attacked by an intruder who destroyed the maquette and killed Kent Reed, her new assistant. Luckily, Hannah’s friend, retired attorney Martha Patterson, is on the scene to ask a million sharp-witted questions. Why were Kent’s house keys missing from the crime scene? Is the woman who was seen lurking outside Hannah’s Brooklyn studio really Olive Quist, the wife of her flamboyant competitor Dennison Simm? How can Hannah get a key witness to overcome her fear of arrest for marijuana use and come forward? And—last but not least—what led somebody to kill a young man who seems to make a much more lasting impression dead than alive? Lacking the fast pace and legal ingenuity of Martha’s debut (Crime in Good Company, 1997), this sequel has to get by on negative, albeit genuine, virtues: Martha’s tact, maturity, and freedom from annoying series-detective tics. Battle-hardened readers, though, may well share Martha’s reaction to the dirt she digs up on the late Kent Reed: “So what?”

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-312-19920-1
Page count: 240pp
Publisher: Dunne/Minotaur
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1st, 1999


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