cover image Big Boned

Big Boned

Meg Cabot, . . Avon, $13.95 (280pp) ISBN 978-0-06-052513-2

Cabot's cute third crime fest featuring Heather Wells, teen pop sensation turned 20-something college student (last seen in 2006's Size 14 Is Not Fat Either ), tackles the recent graduate student union controversy at NYU-like New York College head-on. Heather is paying her tuition by working at the college's Fischer Hall, a residence hall nicknamed “Death Dorm” after several recent murders. She's also semisecretly dating Tad Tocco, her remedial math prof, while pining for her neighbor and true love, Cooper, a PI who's not happy about Tad but has difficulty expressing his feelings. When Fisher Hall's interim director, Dr. Owen Veatch, is murdered, Sebastian Blumenthal, a Graduate Student Collective protest leader, becomes the prime suspect. A tip that Blumenthal is innocent leads Heather into some tight spots. Thankfully, Tad has coaxed her into working out occasionally, and she's more than able to squirm out of trouble while never losing that perky princess Cabot vibe that keeps fans coming back for more. (Dec.)