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A FATAL CHAPTER by Lorna Barrett


by Lorna Barrett

Pub Date: June 2nd, 2015
ISBN: 978-0-425-25266-6
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime

A fire may have closed Tricia Miles' New Hampshire mystery bookstore, but it can’t stop Tricia from her amateur sleuthing.

While she awaits a check from her insurance company to start repairs, Tricia is volunteering at the Stoneham Chamber of Commerce. Her sister, Angelica, president of the chamber, is deeply involved with several businesses trying to make Stoneham into a popular tourist destination, a plan approved by most but not all of the residents. Some, like crabby Selectman Earl Winkler, do all they can to thwart her plans. Tricia’s unfortunate habit of finding murder victims has made her known as the town jinx. While walking Angelica’s dog, Sarge, she justifies the sobriquet by finding Pete Renquist, the flirtatious head of the Stoneham Historical Society, in extremis. After he dies at the hospital, Police Chief Grant Baker, Tricia’s friend, thinks that it may be murder. Tricia is less shocked and upset by the latest victim than by her discovery that Angelica is also Nigela Ricita, the unseen head of Nigela Ricita Associates, a company that’s been improving Stoneham by pumping money into local projects. When another member of the historical society is attacked, Tricia can’t resist investigating despite the obligatory warnings from Chief Baker. Meanwhile, she must also deal with ever increasing pressure from the owner of her building, who wants her to buy it at an outrageous price, and her ex-husband, who insists that she come back to him. She continues to snoop while she and Angelica try to repair the town flower baskets, which have been repeatedly vandalized, putting herself in danger from a desperate killer.

Fans of the series (Book Clubbed, 2014, etc.) will welcome this tenth installment, which fleshes out its weak mystery by continuing to develop the many returning characters.