cover image The Art of Murder: A Dead-End Job Mystery

The Art of Murder: A Dead-End Job Mystery

Elaine Viets. Obsidian, $17.99 (304p) ISBN 978-0-451-47613-5

Viets’s solid 15th Dead-End Job mystery (after 2015’s Checked Out) finds Fort Lauderdale, Fla., PI Helen Hawthorne touring the Bonnet House Museum, where she meets artist Annabel Griffin. Outside the museum after the tour, Annabel collapses after drinking some odd-tasting raspberry tea and eventually dies from nicotine poisoning. A close friend of Annabel’s is convinced that the dead woman’s boorish ex-husband, Hugo Hythe, murdered her, and she hires Helen to investigate. Helen noticed Hugo callously step over the unconscious Annabel right after her fall and later learns that Annabel contributed to Hugo’s losing his position as the CEO of a Fortune 500 company. Meanwhile, Helen’s PI husband, Phil, has been retained to catch the so-called Gold Ghost, who has been breaking into top-floor condos and stealing gold coins. The stakes for that case rise when the burglar fatally bludgeons an elderly man who presumably interrupted another theft. Fans of light mysteries will be rewarded. Agent: David Hendin, D.H. Literary. (May)