Wealthy widow Emma Hurley died with only her servants at her side — but after she passes away, her greedy heirs crawl out of the woodwork to stake a claim in Emma’s fortune. To their surprise, Emma was not content to leave behind a simple will. Instead, her final testament includes a clever puzzle ... one to be given only to her living heirs.
The first one to solve the puzzle will inherit Emma’s entire estate; everyone else will be left with a pittance. The will also stipulates that Cora Felton — local celebrity and famed author of a popular syndicated crossword puzzle column — must referee the contest.
Unfortunately, it’s Cora’s niece, Sherry Carter, who is the brains behind Cora’s “Puzzle Lady” persona. And it’s up to Sherry to unravel the bizarre riddle Emma Hurley engineered before her death. For soon it’s plain that Emma’s game is one without a clear winner ... and that the players could lose far more than they ever imagined!
Cora has no problem tracking hubby to his love nest, but when Brittany refuses to believe he's cheating on her, Cora has to blackmail him to prove the affair. Before she can, a car bomb rocks the quiet streets of Bakerhaven, and the stakes escalate to murder.
To save Becky's clueless client from the clutches of the law, Cora will manipulate a TV reporter, cast suspicion on an innocent man, crack crossword and Sudoku clues, solve the liquor store robbery, and enlist the aid of both Sergeant Crowley and his girlfriend in Parnell Hall's Puzzled Indemnity, this outrageous new entry in the Puzzle Lady Mystery series featuring Sudoku by Will Shortz.
There are Michael's and Meg's doting but demanding mothers, for a start. And then there's the fruitless hunt for a place big enough for the couple to live together. And a succession of crises brought on by the well-meaning but utterly wacky demands of her friends and family. Demands that Meg has a hard time refusing---which is why she's tending the switchboard of Mutant Wizards, where her brother's computer games are created, and handling all the office management problems that no one else bothers with. For companionship, besides a crew of eccentric techies, she has a buzzard with one wing---who she must feed frozen mice thawed in the office microwave---and Michael's mother's nightmare dog. Not to mention the psychotherapists who refuse to give up their lease on half of the office space, and whose conflicting therapies cause continuing dissension. This is not what Meg had in mind when she agreed to help her brother move his staff to new offices.
In fact, the atmosphere is so consistently loony that the office mail cart makes several passes through the reception room, with the office practical joker lying on top of it pretending to be dead, before Meg realizes that he's become the victim of someone who wasn't joking at all. He's been murdered for real.
Donna Andrews's debut book, Murder with Peacocks, won the St. Martin's Malice Domestic best first novel contest and reaped a harvest of other honors as well. This is the fourth book in the Meg Langslow series, which features the intrepid Meg and her cast of oddball relatives. Their capers are a lighthearted joy to read.
Bakerhaven, Connecticut, seems like the ideal place to host a charity crossword-puzzle tournament–after all, the town is home to Cora Felton, the beloved puzzle columnist known as the Puzzle Lady. A slew of celebrity contestants are on the way. And the locals have been invited to challenge the veteran puzzlers head-on. But soon the town’s attention is fixated on something far more controversial than crosswords...when the body of the town tart is discovered lying dead on her kitchen floor. Before anyone can stop her, Cora is hot on the trail of the truth, interviewing nosy neighbors, digging up dirt, and drawing out a lonely recluse who just may hold the key to cracking the crime. But will she solve the case before the contest comes to a deadly end? Cora once again proves that sleuthing spells S-U-S-P-E-N-S-E–up, across, and down!
When a key witness in the alimony hearing gets murdered, a KenKen puzzle is left at the scene of the crime. Is someone trying to tell Cora something? Before she can find out, she runs into more murders, more puzzles (both KenKen and crossword) and a murder weapon that seems to point to Melvin as the killer! At least it might have, if Cora hadn't suppressed it.
Does the Puzzle Lady still have feelings for the scoundrel she once married? Don't ask. She might kill you!
The twelfth in the Puzzle Lady series, Parnell Hall's The KenKen Killings is sure to please fans, and make some new ones.
The brilliantly funny Donna Andrews delivers boughs of holly and barrels of laughs with Meg's latest adventure in her award-winning, New York Times bestselling series. A few nights before Christmas, Meg is awakened when volunteer fireman Michael is summoned to the New Life Baptist Church, where someone has rigged a cage full of skunks in the choir loft. The lengthy process of de-skunking the church requires its annual pre-Christmas concert to relocate to Trinity Episcopal, where Mother insists the show must go on, despite the budget-related protests of Mr. Vess, an elderly vestryman. Meanwhile, when Meg helps her grandfather take the skunks to the zoo, they discover that his boa has been stolen - only to turn up later during the concert, slithering out from the ribbon-bedecked evergreens. The next morning is Sunday, and the congregation of St. Byblig's, the local Catholic church, arrive to find it completely filled with several hundred ducks.
It's clear that some serious holiday pranksters are on the loose, and Meg is determined to find them. But before she can, a fire breaks out at Trinity, and Mr. Vess is discovered dead. Who would have murdered such a harmless - if slightly cranky - old man? Who has the time during the busy holiday season to herd all of these animals into the town's churches? And will Meg ever be able to finish all of her shopping, wrapping, cooking, caroling, and decorating in time for Christmas Eve? A Yuletide treasure for the ages, Duck the Halls is guaranteed to put the "ho ho hos" into readers' holidays.
Now with an excerpt from Donna Andrews' next Meg Langslow holiday mystery How the Finch Stole Christmas!, available in October 2017.
A Puzzle In A Pear Tree
’Tis the season to be jolly, but Cora Felton, shanghaied into “The Twelve Days of Christmas” as a most reluctant maid-a-milking, has every right to feel like a grinch. When someone steals the partridge from the pear tree and replaces it with a cryptic puzzle she has no hope of solving, it’s almost more than the Puzzle Lady can bear. But then smug crossword creator Harvey Beerbaum solves the acrostic, and it turns out to be a poem promising the death of an actress. This is more like it! Could the threat be aimed at Cora and her thespian debut? Or at Sherry, one of the ladies-dancing? Or at Sherry’s nemesis, the pageant’s predatory lead, Becky Baldwin?
Cora and Sherry barely have time for a mystery, what with trimming Christmas trees and buying Christmas presents, but rehearsals go on, under police protection--until a killer strikes elsewhere in a most unexpected manner.Ordinarily Cora Felton would be delighted to have two murders to solve. But this time she finds herself vying with a visiting Scotland Yard inspector who appears to have an all-too-personal stake in solving the crimes. Cora does too when her own niece becomes a prime suspect and the murderer strikes again.
Is someone trying to shut down the Christmas pageant? Cora would be only too happy if that were the case, but she fears the secrets lie deeper. Now she is interviewing witnesses, breaking into motel rooms, finding evidence, planting evidence, and having a merry old time. In fact, she would be perfectly happy--if this wasn’t turning out to be a Christmas to die for!
It looks like wedding bells again for the much-married Cora Felton when distinguished widower Raymond Harstein III moves into town and makes a play for the Puzzle Lady. That is, it does until the mail brings puzzling cryptograms, which, when deciphered, warn Cora off the match.
Or do they?
As the puzzles keep coming, a killer’s game must be played in earnest, and it’s up to the Puzzle Lady to solve the riddle—if anyone is going to live to make it to the altar!
A shocking crime of passion has Bakerhaven buzzing!
In Parnell Hall's Presumed Puzzled, the Puzzle Lady gets more than she bargained for when she’s hired to track down Paula Martindale’s straying husband. She finds him, all right—hacked to pieces on his living room rug, while his blood-drenched wife haunts the crime scene clutching a butcher knife.
It’s a tough spot for attractive young attorney Becky Baldwin. Paula is presumed innocent until proven guilty, but try to find one juror who’s going to think so.
It’s up to Cora to find the evidence to save the day. She has just two problems: She’s a witness for the prosecution, and every bit of evidence she finds in Paula’s favor, from crossword puzzles to Sudoku to alibi witnesses, tends to indicate that Cora herself is the killer!
So far Meg Langslow's summer is not going swimmingly. Down in her small Virginia hometown, she's maid of honor at the nuptials of three loved ones--each of whom has dumped the planning in her capable hands. One bride is set on including a Native American herbal purification ceremony, while another wants live peacocks on the lawn. Only help from the town's drop-dead gorgeous hunk, disappointingly rumored to be gay, keeps Meg afloat in a sea of dotty relatives and outrageous neighbors.
And, in whirl of summer parties and picnics, Southern hospitality is strained to the limit by an offensive newcomer who hints at skeletons in the guests' closets. But it seems this lady has offended one too many when she's found dead in suspicious circumstances, followed by a string of accidents--some fatal. Soon, level-headed Meg's to-do list extends from flower arrangements and bridal registries to catching a killer--before the next catered event is her own funeral...
At the heart of the matter is the not-so-little white lie Cora has been living for years: assuming the grandmotherly public face of her publicity-shy niece Sherry, who designs crossword puzzles and publishes them under Cora’s name—aka the Puzzle Lady. It turns out that Sherry’s and Benny’s cruciverbalist paths had recently crossed, resulting in the current incriminating conundrum.
As if Sherry’s wedding engagement jitters and a nasty battle over missing antique chairs weren’t enough to deal with, now Cora has to solve the ultimate mystery: how to keep the secret of her identity without losing her life. Because not only does all evidence point to Cora, but someone seems to want her dead. It looks like a riddle with no answer. Luckily for Cora and Sherry, that’s their favorite kind!
Cora is eager to undo her Japanese counterpart---at least until the poor woman is arrested for murder and Cora realizes that she accidentally framed her for the crime. As if that weren't frustrating enough, the publicity of her arrest drives Minami's sales through the roof!
Now it's up to Cora to clear her rival's name, get her off the bestseller list, and trap the real killer, but she'd better do it fast, before the cops find out what Cora did, and she winds up facing more jail time than Minami.
Boasting an entertaining, fun-filled mystery, as well as several satisfying crossword and sudoku puzzles, The Puzzle Lady vs. The Sudoku Lady from Parnell Hall's popular mystery series makes for a rollicking good read.
Book 8 of the Port Danby Cozy Mystery Series. Each book can be read as a standalone but they are best read in order.
1. Marigolds and Murder
2. Carnations and Chaos
3. Mistletoe and Mayhem
4. Roses and Revenge
5. Tulips and Trouble
6. Dahlias and Death
7. Peonies and Poison
8. Hyacinths and Homicide
Books 9-14 TBA
Full-length novel ~50,000 words
Meanwhile, a diabolical killer is leaving puzzle clues. If only they were just sudoku puzzles-Cora can't solve the crosswords without the help of her niece, Sherry, who's back in Bakerhaven taking care of her toddler. In order to clear her name, Cora must match wits with a gruff NYPD homicide sergeant who is quite attractive, except for the fact that he suspects her of murder.
NYPD Puzzle is a clever mystery, boasting madcap hijinks as well as fun puzzles. Mystery readers will thoroughly enjoy this latest from acclaimed author Parnell Hall.
Meg's long-lost paternal grandfather, Dr. Blake, has hired Stanley Denton to find her grandmother Cordelia. Dr. Blake was reunited with his family when he saw Meg's picture—she's a dead ringer for Cordelia—and now Stanley has found a trail to his long-lost love in a small town less than an hour's drive away. He convinces Meg to come with him to meet her, but unfortunately, the woman they meet is Cordelia's cousin—Cordelia died several years ago, and the cousin suspects she was murdered by her long-time neighbor.
Stanley and Meg agree to help track down the killer and get justice for Cordelia. Grandfather even has perfect cover--he will come to stage a rescue of the feral emus and ostriches (escaped from an abandoned farm) that infest this town. He dashes off to organize the rescue—which will, of course, involve most of Meg's family and friends in Caerphilly. But then, the evil neighbor is murdered, and not only Cordelia's cousin but also the entire contingent of emu-rescuers, who have had conflict with the neighbor, are suspects. Only Meg and the cousin—who seems to share a lot of telling traits with Meg—can find the real killer and clear the air in The Good, the Bad, and the Emus, the newest beverage-spittingly funny installment in this uproarious series from the one-and-only Donna Andrews.
Parnell Hall delivers another entertaining, puzzle-packed adventure with his delightfully untraditional sleuth in The Sudoku Puzzle Murders, featuring for the first time sudoku puzzles by New York Times crossword editor Will Shortz.
The brilliantly funny Donna Andrews delivers another winner in the acclaimed avian-themed series that mystery readers have come to love. The eighteenth book in her New York Times best-selling series continues to surprise and delight in this next knee-slapping adventure featuring Meg Langslow and all the eccentric characters that make up her world.
It's another holiday and Mayor Randall Shiffley has turned Caerphilly, Virginia into Spooky City, USA. The residents are covering every window with cobwebs and roaming the streets in costume to entertain the tourists, and Meg's grandfather is opening a new "Creatures of the Night" exhibit in the zoo. When a real body at the zoo and a suspicious fire at the Haunted House threaten to mar the town's creepy fun, it's up to Meg Langslow to save Halloween.
Like Meg Langslow, the blacksmith heroine of her series, Donna Andrews was born and raised in Yorktown, Virginia. She introduced Meg to readers in her Malice Domestic Contest-winning first mystery, Murder with Peacocks, and readers are still laughing. This novel swept up the Agatha, Anthony, Barry, and a Romantic Times award for best first novel, and a Lefty for funniest mystery.
With Lord of the Wings, readers can look forward to another zany Meg Langslow mystery--this one filled with Halloween spirit and suspense.
When an elderly boarder at a Bakerhaven bed-and-breakfast drops dead during afternoon tea, there's nothing particularly suspicious about it—except for the Sudoku in his jacket pocket. But when a second body turns up in the window seat and an autopsy shows both men were poisoned with elderberry wine, the Puzzle Lady suspects she's dealing with a cold-blooded killer who for some reason is copying the Cary Grant movie Arsenic and Old Lace, in which two old ladies who run a boarding house poison elderly widowers and bury them in the basement. More murders, more puzzles, and a grave dug in the cellar seem to cement the theory.
Ordinarily, Cora would eat a case like this for breakfast, but for once she can't figure it out. And she's not sure if the clues don't add up, or if the much-married Puzzle Lady is just distracted by being involved in her first romantic entanglement in years.
Arsenic and Old Puzzles is filled with laughs, mayhem, and fun new puzzles by Will Shortz. Mystery and puzzle fans will find much to enjoy in this latest treat from Parnell Hall.
Then an antiques dealer is found stuffed in a trunk with his head bashed in—and the yard sale turns into a day's-long media circus. Even worse, the suspect arrested for the crime is the person Michael needs to secure academic tenure. Now, Meg is juggling an ever-growing list of suspects. And she's going to have to outthink and outwit one clever murderer who lives by "everything must go..."
When young attorney Becky Baldwin hires Cora Felton to make a blackmail payment drop, it couldn't go worse: she stumbles over a corpse and a puzzle, and someone steals the money. Becky
won't tell her who the client is, but the most likely suspect is Cora's least favorite ex-husband, Melvin, who claims he's being framed by a psychopath with a grudge. Soon Cora finds herself in a no-win situation. Solving the murder will either put Melvin's neck in the noose, or incur the wrath of a cunning, cold-blooded killer who delights in playing deadly mind games and may be targeting her niece Sherry and Sherry's new baby girl.
$10,000 in Small, Unmarked Puzzles is another delightful entry in Parnell Hall's entertaining Puzzle Lady series, featuring new puzzles by Will Shortz that help readers solve the mystery!
The brilliantly funny and talented Donna Andrews delivers another winner in the acclaimed avian-themed series that mystery readers have come to love. Cozies make excellent stocking-stuffers, and The Nightingale Before Christmas is guaranteed to put the "ho ho hos" into the holidays for the legions of fans hungry for another Christmas book featuring Meg Langslow. Donna has won many awards for this very popular series, and continues to come up with new hilarious adventures for her endearing heroine. The novel is full of superb screwball comedy as well as Donna's trademark crisp plotting, not to mention bushels of holiday cheer--it wouldn't be the most wonderful time of the year without it.
Cora pokes into Overmeyer's death, hoping to prove he died of natural causes. She learns the cranky hermit was the sole surviving member of a forty-year-old stock pooling agreement, and before she can say "capital gain," the town is full of heirs. Complicating things is Sherry's ex-husband, Dennis, who is playing detective in the hopes of impressing his ex-wife. With Sherry out of town, her restraining order against him is moot, and he is taking full advantage of the fact.
With Dead Man's Puzzle, Parnell Hall delivers another stellar, puzzle-packed entry in his entertaining Puzzle Lady series.
The hilariously funny Donna Andrews delivers another winner in the award-winning New York Times bestselling series that has captured human and avian hearts alike. Meg Langslow is plying her blacksmith's trade at "Caerphilly Days," a festival inspired by her town's sudden notoriety as "The Town That Mortgaged Its Jail." The lender has foreclosed on all Caerphilly's public buildings, and all employees have evacuated —except one. Phineas Throckmorton, the town clerk, has been barricaded in the courthouse basement for over a year.
Mr. Throckmorton's long siege has only been possible because of a pre-Civil War tunnel leading from the courthouse basement to a crawl space beneath the bandstand. The real reason for Caerphilly Days is to conceal the existence of the tunnel: the tourist crowds camouflage supply deliveries, and the ghastly screeching of the tunnel's rusty trap door is drowned out by as many noisy activities as the locals can arrange. But the lender seems increasingly determined to evict Mr. Throckmorton—and may succeed after one of its executives is found shot, apparently from inside the basement. Meg and her fellow townspeople suspect that someone hopes to end the siege by framing Mr. Throckmorton. Unless the real killer can be found quickly, the town will have to reveal the secret of the tunnel—and the fact that they've been aiding and abetting the basement's inhabitant. Meg soon deduces that the killer isn't just trying to end the siege but to conceal information that would help the town reclaim its buildings--if the townspeople can find it before the lender destroys it in a gut-busting caper that will have giggles and guffaws coming as fast as a four-alarm fire.
A gaggle of praise for Donna Andrews and the Meg Langslow Mystery Series:
"If you long for more fun mysteries, a la Janet Evanovich, you'll love Donna Andrews's Meg Langslow series." —Charlotte Observer
"A long-running series that gets better all the time. A fine blend of academic satire, screwball comedy, and murder." —Booklist
"As always, Andrews laces this entertaining whodunit with wit, a fine storyline and characters we've come to know and love." —Richmond Times-Dispatch on The Real Macaw
The newest mystery in Donna Andrews's gut-bustingly funny, award-winning, New York Times bestselling series is anything but elementary. Meg Langslow is helping Mayor Randall Shiffley organize the Virginia Un-Fair, Caerphilly's entry in the race to replace the old state fair (which has gone bankrupt). Before a line can even form outside the ticket booth, however, a pair of Bantam Russian Orloff chickens are stolen from their coop in the chicken tent. Soon, a rash of vandalism crops up at the fair, showing no heritage farm animal, prize vegetable, or artisanal craft to be safe.
While patrolling the fairgrounds, determined to catch the perp, Meg runs into her friend Molly, who has been building a successful business making goat cheeses. Molly is terrified that she may lose her farm because her idle husband Brett has left her for Genette Sedgewick, a rich hobby winemaker, and is demanding his half of the land. Meg enlists Mother's help to find Molly a divorce lawyer, but later that night, Brett is found murdered and Molly is swiftly accused as his killer.
Meg is convinced that her friend wouldn't so much as harm a fly, but can she find the real killer before it's too late? Will she track down the vandal who has been terrorizing—however creatively—the fair's participants? And will Michael be able to convince her to add members of his new favorite heritage breed to their growing menagerie? Meg's most hilarious caper yet, the curious incident of the hen in the nighttime will have readers rolling on the floor with laughter.
“If sweet-looking, gray-haired Miss Marple cursed, smoked, and carried a gun in her purse, she’d be a ringer for Cora Felton.”—Booklist
The Puzzle Lady couldn’t be happier. Matt Greystone, the rookie sensation who just signed a huge contract with the Yankees after coming to the team as the player to be named later in a trade with the Diamondbacks, winning seventeen games as a starting pitcher, was coming to town to rehab from an arm injury. A diehard Yankee fan, Cora was delighted when Matt invited her to a weekend pool party.
On the plus side, she got to meet Derek Jeter.
On the minus side, she had to solve a puzzle (that was also named later), and a couple of the guests got killed.
Solving murders is right up the Puzzle Lady’s alley. Unfortunately, someone has broken into the house of a local psychiatrist and rifled her patient files, and Chief Harper wants Cora to solve that, too.
Cora already knows who broke into the house.
INCLUDES CROSSWORDS AND A SUDOKU BY WILL SHORTZ THAT HELP YOU SOLVE THE MYSTERY
Of course, Michael's not the only person whose career the dictatorial star has manipulated. So when the star is found murdered, the police have plenty of suspects. Trouble is, Meg doesn't believe they're going to arrest the right one. Soon she finds herself following the murderer's trail through a hotel filled with egotistical actors, costumed fans, and a motley flock of monkeys and parrots who, rebelling against their role as live scenery, have escaped from their cages to take an active (and noisy) role in the festivities.
When the obnoxious sixteen-year-old Peggy Dawson asks Cora Felton to solve a puzzle for her, Cora is delighted to find that the puzzle has been stolen. She is less delighted, however, when a blood-stained knife is found in its place.
Soon a body is discovered in the middle of Main Street, and Cora has a murder investigation on her hands. It does not help matters when she hears that her least favorite ex-husband, Melvin, is in town pulling a real estate scam, particularly when she discovers that Melvin may have purchased the knife. Now it’s up to the Puzzle Lady to figure out what really happened, in The Purloined Puzzle, from the New York Times' bestselling author Parnell Hall.
During a 2am feeding for her four-month-old twins, Meg Langslow hears an odd noise and goes downstairs to find her living room filled with dozens of animals—cats, dogs, hamsters, gerbils, rabbits, guinea pigs, and a stunningly foul-mouthed macaw. She soon learns that financial woes have caused the local animal shelter to repeal its no-kill policy.
Her kindhearted father, her zoologist grandfather, and other like-minded citizens have stolen all the shelter's animals, both as a gesture of protest and to protect them until the hated policy can be repealed. But the volunteer who was to transport the animals to new homes has been murdered. Was it the victim's tangled love life that drove someone to murder? Or the dark secrets behind local politics? And will Meg ever succeed in finding homes for all the animals that have landed in her life?
Full of the hilarious shenanigans – avian as well as human – that have come to surround Meg and her eccentric band of friends and family, the latest from the one and only Donna Andrews will have you laughing until the very last page: it's The Real Macaw!
Stanley Hastings finally felt like a real PI, staking out a New Jersey motel to get evidence on a woman’s cheating husband.It should have been a piece of cake. Only the husband wasn’t cheating, someone killed him, and the cops are trying to pin the murder on the man apprehended at the scene, who just happens to be Stanley.
To clear his name, Stanley will wind up jumping bail, impersonating a police officer, staking out a mob boss, and appropriating a murder weapon from a sassy Jersey Girl who keeps trying to distract him by ripping her clothes off.
And that’s just for starters . . .
For four previous Christmases, New York Times bestselling author Donna Andrews has delighted readers with holiday mysteries, full of Christmas cheer and starring her quirky characters. Now she gives us another hilarious new adventure in her award-winning Meg Langslow series with Lark! The Herald Angels Sing.
It’s Christmastime in Caerphilly and Meg, full of holiday spirit, is helping out with the town's festivities. While directing a nativity pageant and herding the children participating in it, she finds a surprise in the manger: a live baby.
A note from the mother, attached to the baby girl’s clothes, says that it’s time for her father to take care of her—and implicates Meg’s brother, Rob, as the father. And while a DNA test can reveal whether there's any truth to the accusation, Rob's afraid the mere suspicion could derail his plan to propose to the woman he loves. Meg quickly realizes it's up to her to find the baby's real identity.
She soon discovers that the baby—named Lark according to the fateful note—may be connected to something much bigger. Something that eventually puts a growing number of Meg’s friends and family in danger. And before long, Meg realizes she can’t fix things single-handedly. Meanwhile, a war is brewing between Caerphilly and its arch-rival Clay County—and it's not a snowball fight. Can Meg bring everyone together in time for the holidays?
As in her previous Christmas mysteries, Andrews continues to write “firmly in the grand tradition of Agatha Christie’s Christmas books” (Toronto Globe and Mail) with a book that will put cozy lovers everywhere in a holly jolly mood.
Poor Stanley Hastings. After getting hired by a hitman and nearly getting shot, the put-upon PI needed some fun, so when a gorgeous damsel in distress walks through his office door, she seems just what the doctor ordered.Wrong again.
The fair maiden turns out to be a married mom who wants Stanley to find out why her teenage daughter is skipping school. Playing truant officer isn't exactly Stanley’s idea of fun, but at least it should be easy. Fat chance.
Stanley being Stanley, nothing goes right, nothing is as it seems, bodies start to pile up, and faster than you can say “fall guy,” guess who’s left holding the bag?
Meg is eight and a half months pregnant with twins when Michael asks if she wouldn't mind another houseguest. One of his doctoral students is directing his new translation of a play by a minor Spanish playwright, and the playwright has agreed to come to town for the production.
Senor Mendoza turns out to be a drinker, a smoker, and an inveterate partygoer. Before long, Meg's kitchen is filled with the smells of Spanish food and the voices of all the wilder souls in both the drama and Spanish departments. Into this chaos arrive two prune-faced administrators, the dean of the English department and a man from the college president's office, who say that the play must be canceled.
When the dean is found murdered, Meg's house becomes a crime scene, and the only way to restore peace is to help Chief Burke solve the murders---while rescuing the student's dissertation and Michael's tenure---all before dashing off to the hospital to give birth to her twins!
The one and only Donna Andrews continues to surprise and delight in this next knee-slapping adventure featuring Meg Langslow and all the eccentric characters that make up her world.
Now Richard's in court fighting for his life, and Stanley's out on the firing line trying to dig up some evidence in his favor. It won't be easy. The murdered woman was a law clerk for a prominent judge, and everyone Stanley needs to question is currently tied up in a high-profile Global Banking trial.
As Stanley races back and forth between two courtrooms, searching for the key to the mystery through investigative techniques that could easily get him charged as an accessory, every fact tends to point to Richard's guilt: DNA evidence proves he is the man who had sex with the victim just before she died, eyewitnesses put him at the scene of the crime, and his fingerprints are on the murder weapon.
In desperation, Richard resorts to a series of courtroom tactics so outrageous they would make Perry Mason blush. Before the case is over, everyone in the courtroom will be convinced that not only does Richard Rosenberg have a fool for a client, but the client has a fool for a lawyer.
Gone Gull brings readers yet another knee-slapping adventure filled with New York Times bestselling author Donna Andrews’ cast of wacky characters.
Meg is spending the summer at the Biscuit Mountain Craft Center, helping her grandmother Cordelia run the studios. But someone is committing acts of vandalism, threatening to ruin the newly-opened center’s reputation. Is it the work of a rival center? Have the developers who want to build a resort atop Biscuit Mountain found a new tactic to pressure Cordelia into selling? Or is the real target Meg’s grandfather, who points out that any number of environmentally irresponsible people and organizations could have it in for him?
While Meg is trying to track down the vandal, her grandfather is more interested in locating a rare gull. Their missions collide when a body is found in one of the classrooms. Can Meg identify the vandal and the murderer in time to save the center’s name—while helping her grandfather track down and rescue his beloved gulls?
It’s murder on the movie set!
It’s no surprise when Cora Felton’s ex-husband’s sensational tell-all memoir, Confessions of a Trophy Husband: My Life with the Puzzle Lady, is optioned for the movies, but it certainly raises eyebrows when the Puzzle Lady herself signed on as an associate producer. Cora explains gamely that she hoped to have some control over the project. The truth is that she needs the money.
Now Cora is filming her life story on location in New York City, and things couldn’t be worse. She doesn’t like the script, she doesn’t like the director, and she absolutely hates the actress who is playing her in the movie. It’s almost a relief when the first dead body shows up on the set. If only it didn’t come with a crossword puzzle . . .
Besides, she has taken on another responsibility--making sure none of her fellow crafters ruin the historical authenticity of the fair with forbidden modern devices--like wrist watches, calculators, or cell phones. She's only doing it to keep peace with the mother of the man she loves. And Michael himself will don the white-and-gold uniform of a French officer for the re-enactment--what actor could resist a role like that?
Meg's also trying to keep her father from scaring too many tourists with his impersonation of an 18th century physician. And to prevent a snooping reporter from publishing any stories about local scandals. Not to mention saving her naive brother, Rob, from the clutches of a con man who might steal the computer game he has invented. It's a tough job--at least, until the swindler is found dead, slain in Meg's booth with one of her own wrought-iron creations.
Now Meg must add another item to her already lengthy to do list: "Don't forget to solve the murder!"
Fortunately, the more trouble Meg faces, the more fun the reader will have--and Meg faces plenty of trouble in this lighthearted and funny novel.
But dead bodies do seem to keep crossing her path. And now her friend Rosalie has been killed just hours after confiding a secret to Josie, leaving a bereaved twelve-year-old sister, Paige, who reminds Josie of herself when her mother died. It turns out that Rosalie had other secrets too: a mysterious treasure she told her sister she was leaving behind—and a secret admirer who now seems to be turning his creepy attention to Josie!
As Josie races to solve the crime while helping Paige and trying to keep her business afloat, Jane K. Cleland brings us an irresistible new blend of coziness, crime, and collectibles.
There are two social functions in Savannah guaranteed to get people talking: weddings and funerals. And just as consignment shop owner Reagan Summerside agrees to marry the hunky Walker Boone, her neighbors, sisters Annie Fritz and Elsie Abbot, step up their business as professional mourners. They are so successful that the Sleepy Pines Retirement Center has hired them as a part of their retirement package. But the celebration over good business is cut short when the residents at Pines suddenly begin dying at an alarming rate. And the sisters are the first suspects.
Reagan has her doubts, however, and begins to look into the strange phenomenon. But then something even stranger happens: a body winds up in the sisters’ pink Caddy. The evidence begins to pile up and the suspicious case of Willie Fishbine, who swindled the sisters out of a fortune and coincidentally died prior to the Pines case, is reopened.
Not wanting Willie to be buried until they can find the killer responsible for the murders, Reagan must catch the culprit in time to walk down the aisle. Witty, fabulous, and full of charm, Lethal in Old Lace is perfect for fans of Ellery Adams and Jenn McKinlay.
When President Kate Lee calls Stone Barrington to Washington on an urgent matter, it’s soon clear that a potentially disastrous situation requires the kind of help more delicate than even he can provide...and he knows just the right man for the job.
Teddy Fay: ex-CIA, master of disguise, and a gentleman not known for abiding by legal niceties in the pursuit of his own brand of justice.
Meg Langslow is at Trinity Episcopal Church locking up after an event and checking on the toucan her friend Rev. Robyn Smith is fostering in her office. When she investigates the sound of hammering in the columbarium (the underground crypt where cremated remains are buried), Meg finds the murdered body of an elderly parishioner. Several niches have been chiseled open; several urns knocked out; and amid the spilled ashes is a gold ring with a huge red stone.
The curmudgeonly victim had become disgruntled with the church and ranted all over town about taking back his wife's ashes. Did someone who had it in for him follow him to the columbarium? Or was the motive grave robbery? Or did he see someone breaking in and investigate? Why was the ruby left behind?
While Chief Burke investigates the murder, Robyn recruits Meg to contact the families of the people whose ashes were disturbed. While doing so, Meg learns many secrets about Caerphilly's history—and finds that the toucan may play a role in unmasking the killer. Clues and events indicate that a thief broke into the church to steal the toucan the night of the murder, so Meg decides to set a trap for the would-be toucan thief—who might also be the killer.
Toucan Keep a Secret is the twenty-third book in New York Times bestselling author Donna Andrews' hilarious Mag Langslow mystery series.
Under the tutelage of Stone Barrington, Herbie Fisher has transformed from a bumbling sad sack into the youngest partner at the white-shoe law firm Woodman & Weld, and a man whose company is in high demand both because of his professional acumen and his savoir faire. But even his newly won composure and finely honed skills can’t prepare him for the strange escapade he’s unwittingly pulled into, and which—unbeknownst to him—has put him at the center of a bull’s-eye. In the city that never sleeps there are always devious schemes afoot, and Herbie will have to be quick on his feet to stay one step ahead of his enemies...and they’re closing in.
The hilly terrain next to the old Sprocket house that Meg Langslow and her fiancé, Michael, are refurbishing is the perfect location for an "extreme" croquet field—even the legs of cows and sheep are convenient extra wickets. A sport traditionally reserved for genteel society, croquet has become all the rage in Caerphilly...until it appears someone in town has taken the "rage" a bit too literally.
AND KNOCK 'EM DEAD.
While stumbling down a steep bank after her ball, Meg encounters the body of a fresh female corpse with a mallet-sized dent in her head. If that isn't reason enough to call a time-out, it turns out that Michael knew the woman from years before. Ever curious, Meg decides that playing arm-chair sleuth is far more important than working on her game...and soon she finds herself in the perfect position to solve the murder mystery—or become the next victim.
Ever a man of mystery and intrigue, Teddy Fay has donned a new disguise--that of Mark Weldon, a stuntman and actor starring in Centurion Studios' newest film. When the picture's leading lady begins receiving blackmail threats, Teddy is in the perfect position to investigate, and it soon becomes clear that the villains have more in their sights than just money. Money they've got. What they need is prestige, the cache of a respected studio to lend authority and legitimacy to their artistic endeavors . . . and a little bit of vengeance in the bargain.
From the seedy hidden corners of Los Angeles to the glamorous Hollywood Hills, it will take every ounce of Teddy's cunning to save an actress's career, protect the studio, and finish filming Centurion's next big hit.
The new year is off to a smooth start. Pink's Flowers is doing well and Lacey is growing even closer to her wonderful boyfriend, Detective James Briggs. But when a local man is killed, one of Lacey's dearest friends is implicated in the murder. Briggs has asked her to step away from the case but Lacey is determined to find the real killer. Will her meddling cause irreparable damage to their relationship? Lacey must risk everything, including her heart, to find the truth.
When Teddy Fay receives a freelance assignment from a gentleman he can't refuse, he jets off to Paris on the hunt for a treasonous criminal. But as Teddy unearths more information that just doesn't seem to connect, his straightforward mission becomes far bigger--and stranger--than he could imagine. The trail of bread crumbs leads to secrets hidden within secrets, evildoers trading in money and power, and a global threat on an unprecedented scale. Under the beautiful veneer of the City of Lights, true villainy lurks in the shadows...and Teddy Fay alone can prevent the impending disaster.
When her old friend Karen drops by with two-year-old son Timmy, Meg Langslow reluctantly agrees to babysit "just for a little while." But when nightfall comes, the toddler is still in residence and Karen isn't answering any phone calls. Meg decides she must find out what's happening, so the next morning, with Timmy in tow, she retraces her friend's footsteps---and begins to suspect that Karen's disappearance is tied to at least one serious crime. Has Karen been killed or kidnapped? Is she on the run from the bad guys? Or is she one of the bad guys? The police don't seem to care, so Meg once again plays sleuth---this time with a toddler as her sidekick.
As usual, Meg's extended family adds to the complications in her life. What covert animal welfare project are Dad and the curmudgeonly zoologist Dr. Montgomery Blake working on---and will Meg have to make another late-night trip to bail them out of jail? Why does Meg's brother keep disappearing---is he merely trying to avoid babysitting, or is he involved in something more mysterious? Will taking care of Timmy dampen newly married Meg and Michael's enthusiasm for starting a family of their own? And are any of Meg's relatives reliable enough to be trusted with a two-year-old---especially a two-year-old whose whereabouts might be of interest to some very dangerous people?
Donna Andrews once again proves her skill as one of the funniest, most entertaining mystery authors around.
Okay, maybe there are people in Antarctica with penguins in their basements, but in Virginia? Only Meg's dad could manage that one. A body down there---well, that's somewhat more likely.
It turns out that explaining the penguins' presence is easy---Meg's dad volunteered to take care of the birds until the future of the bankrupt local zoo could be determined. But identifying the body in the basement proves a harder task---could it be, as Meg fears, that of the vanished zoo owner?
In the small southern town of Caerphilly, rumors fly quickly, and all the other well-meaning citizens who have agreed to take in zoo animals are now worried that they might be stuck with their guests indefinitely. So when Meg's dad generously offers to help out anyone who can no longer care for their four-legged charges, a parade of wild creatures begins to make Meg and Michael's newly renovated house look more like Noah's ark.
Meg and Michael have been planning to elope in order to avoid the elaborate wedding their mothers have begun to organize---a plan that's threatened by both the murder investigation and the carnival of animals. The only way to set things right, Meg decides, is to identify both their uninvited visitor and the killer who put him in their basement.
The award-winning Donna Andrews has demonstrated her immense talent by creating and nurturing a series that continues to delight and surprise with each new book.
Meg is Team Mom and Michael is coach of their twin sons' youth baseball team, the Caerphilly Eagles. Meg tangles with Biff Brown, the petty, vindictive league head. On opening day, Biff's lookalike brother is found dead in the porta-potty at the ball field. So many people think Biff's scum that it would be easy to blame him, but he has an alibi--and Meg suspects he may actually have been the intended victim.
With Die Like an Eagle, readers can look forward to another zany Meg Langslow mystery--this one filled with the spirit of America's pastime and Donna's eagle eye.
Like Meg Langslow, the blacksmith heroine of her series, Donna Andrews was born and raised in Yorktown, Virginia. She introduced Meg to readers in her Malice Domestic Contest-winning first mystery, Murder with Peacocks, and readers are still laughing. This novel swept up the Agatha, Anthony, Barry, and a Romantic Times award for best first novel, and a Lefty for funniest mystery.