An office temp’s six-week stint at a New York firm blossoms into—what else?—murder and romance with a police detective.
Cornelia Upshaw may be a temp, but she’s a Superior Being. Widowed this side of 30 by an insufferable southern husband, she’s passed up lots of long-term offers to stay with an agency that offers her full medical coverage and her three-year-old daughter free daycare. She likes the freedom of being able to walk off jobs that aren’t working out and the security that comes from knowing she’s the best secretary in the building. What she likes best, though, is talking about herself, her apartment, her sister Lizard, her family history, her fondness for romances and mysteries, and the niceties of her sudden, intimate relationship with Lt. Victor Kosciusko, who’s investigating the death by cyanide of J. Abercrombie Davis, Cornelia’s boss’s boss. Since Cornelia, who freshens the clichés she ascribes to other people by capitalizing them (a device that Gets Old Fast), doesn’t care a fig for Dayborne Ventures’ late Vice President of Corporate Restructuring and Accounts or any of the suspects who survive him, very little happens here to interrupt the flow of archly self-infatuated wit.
Cornelia repeatedly interrupts her amateur sleuthing debut with reminders that this is Real Life, Not a Novel. Readers seeking a new novel from biblical romancer Edghill (Wisdom’s Daughter, p. 761, etc.) are hereby warned.