THE CATACOMB CONSPIRACY by Margot Arnold

THE CATACOMB CONSPIRACY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Pesky American anthropologist Penny Spring and her crusty, antisocial best friend, British archaeologist Sir Tobias Glendower, while vacationing in a Roman villa, encounter two murders, a kidnapping, a disappearance, and Inspector Cicco--who wishes they'd stop nosing around and just go home. First, their womanizing gardener is stabbed to death; next, publicity-hungry movie star Margo Demerest, in residence at the adjacent villa, hears odd goings-on in the night, then is found floating in the Tiber (meanwhile, Margo's maid has disappeared, and her landlord, snobby Count Scorsi, ensconced in his palazzo with his mistress and his estate manager, refuses to let Penny and Toby reconnoiter the villa and its catacombs); furthermore, there are rumors that terrorists will attack the upcoming Conference of the Federation of European States. Improbabilities and implausibilities abound, including a frogman rescue-operation mounted by Penny's son and Margo's movie director, before this silly tale wraps up. This long-running (nine titles), lackluster series, with its idiosyncratic detective team, stodgy dialogue, and everything-but-the-kitchen-sink plotting, will draw no new admirers with this outing, but loyalists will find it on a par with The Menehune Murders (1989).

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1992
ISBN: 0881502553
Page count: 235pp
Publisher: Foul Play/Countryman