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by Joan Hess

Pub Date: Jan. 19th, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-312-36361-1
Publisher: Minotaur

A golf tournament brings nothing but headaches for Maggody’s rather preoccupied chief of police.

It isn’t enough that Arly Hanks (Malpractice in Maggody, 2006, etc.) has to figure out how to tell her photographer boyfriend Jack, who’s currently on a shoot in the Brazilian rain forest, that in about eight months, she’ll be increasing Maggody’s population to 756. Mayor Jim Bob Buchanon’s wife, Barbara Ann Buchanon, and the members of her Missionary Society have set up a golf tournament, luring junior circuit players Kale Wasson and Natalie Hotz and PGA pro Bonaparte Buchanon to play on Raz Buchanon’s back 40. But the grand prize—a Ranger Z21 bass boat with an Evinrude E-TEC motor for the first golfer to hit a hole in one—gets the locals into play. Pretty soon Jim Bob, Larry Joe Lambertino, Earl Buchanon and even Earl’s son Kevin are sneaking off to work on their chip shots while their wives practice putting. But the first golfer to ace, Tommy Ridner, a loudmouthed lug from the Farberville Country Club, is also the first golfer to turn up dead. His Farberville cronies, Dennis and Amanda Gilbert, freak out, but Bopeep Buchanon’s latest beau, Luke Smithers, plays it cool. It’s up to Arly to sort the players from the duffers before the corpse count mounts higher than Jim Bob’s handicap.

The mystery’s strictly pitch-and-putt stuff, but as always, it’s the Buchanon shenanigans that are the true delight.