cover image Late for His Own Funeral

Late for His Own Funeral

Elaine Viets. Severn, $28.99 (240p) ISBN 978-0-7278-5029-4

Viets’s enjoyable seventh mystery featuring Chouteau County, Mo., death investigator Angela Richman (after 2021’s Life Without Parole) opens at the funeral of wealthy Sterling Chaney, who died after losing control of his car at high speed and hitting a rock face. Angela attends the church service because she’s an old friend of his estranged widow, Camilla, who has followed his last wishes and given him the ostentatious coffin he wanted. Then Sterling walks into the church and explains he was on a business trip in the Bahamas when the police informed him that his car had been stolen from the airport parking lot back in the U.S. Unfortunately for Sterling, he meets his maker soon after, and this time it’s murder. Camilla must deal with the shock of her husband’s death twice, as well as the truth about how he earned his money. Next comes scandal, another death, and Camilla’s arrest for Sterling’s murder. Determined to clear her friend’s name, Angela starts rattling skeletons in high and low places. Angela’s usual snark and fondness for wine help propel the twisty plot. Viets reliably entertains. Agent: Joshua Bilmes, JABberwocky. (July)