Emma Chizzit and the Queen Anne Killer

Mary Bower Hall, Author Walker & Company $17.95 (178p) ISBN 978-0-8027-5751-7
This brisk, engrossing mystery debut features a likable and multifaceted sleuth: middle-aged Emma Chizzit, the tall, broad-shouldered owner and operator of A-1 Salvage in tiny Fairville, Calif. While cleaning out an old Queen Anne house for Belle Damien, imperious owner of Damien Developers, Emma makes a grisly discovery: the mummified corpse of an infant, strangled by the wire still wound around its neck. Emma reports her findings to the amateurish local police and, to her dismay, finds herself the object of romantic pursuit by kindly but loutish cop Vince Valenti. Continuing to pry into the case, Emma soon finds her life threatened, and a woman she wants to question is murdered. Propelled not only by a search for justice, but also by a relentless desire to snoop, Emma is surrounded by a small galaxy of friends and admirers who are sharply rendered and just right in their small roles. One hopes for more novels featuring plucky, outspoken Emma Chizzit. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
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