cover image Knockdown: A Home Repair Is Homicide Mystery

Knockdown: A Home Repair Is Homicide Mystery

Sarah Graves, Bantam, $25 (288p) ISBN 978-0-440-42312-6

In chapter one of Graves's unsettling 14th Home Repair Is Homicide mystery (after 2009's Crawlspace), Jacobia "Jake" Tiptree is scraping paint off the front steps of her 1823 Federal house in Eastport, Maine, when a guy in his 20s on a bicycle rides by yet again and gives her a dirty look. Soon after, the man returns and this time gets off his bike and accuses Jake of some unspecified crime. "Murder will out," he declares, quoting "that famous guy's play." After recovering from this unpleasant encounter, Jake begins to plan for the upcoming Fourth of July celebration with her family, but an e-mail message from "Nemesis"—"Beware the Fourth"—sets her back on edge. Memorable characters and helpful household tips enhance a dark cozy that will keep the reader turning the pages until the surprising and dramatic conclusion. (May)