cover image Ah, Sweet Mystery: A Kate Mulcay Novel of Suspence

Ah, Sweet Mystery: A Kate Mulcay Novel of Suspence

Celestine Sibley. HarperCollins Publishers, $19 (217pp) ISBN 978-0-06-016304-4

The feisty heroine of this charming, neatly crafted mystery, Kate Mulcay is a self-reliant widow, an Atlanta news hound who lives alone in a backwoods cabin and occasionally covers the police beat. Then a neighbor, Garney Wilcox, is murdered. A local businessman disliked by nearly everyone, Wilcox is the victim of extreme overkill--poisoned, bludgeoned and electrocuted, he is mourned by few save his sweet, octogenarian stepmother, Miss Willie, who stuns everyone by promptly confessing to the crime. Sibley ( Turned Funny ), herself an Atlanta journalist, gives Kate free rein in protecting Miss Willie from her own intentions while uncovering dark deeds ranging from rape to incest to drug-running. Old Nelson Eddy-Jeanette MacDonald songs, a raging pit bull, Girl Scout cookies, a ``beeper'' that vibrates instead of emitting sounds, and a fruit jar full of moonshine--these seemingly disparate elements add up to a beguiling mosaic as intrepid Kate fits them together. (July)