cover image NYPD Puzzle: A Puzzle Lady Mystery

NYPD Puzzle: A Puzzle Lady Mystery

Parnell Hall. Minotaur, $24.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-250-02715-3

Hall’s delightful 15th Puzzle Lady mystery (after 2013’s Arsenic and Old Puzzles) takes Bakerhaven, Conn., puzzle lady Cora Felton and her lawyer chum, Becky Baldwin, to the Big Apple for a meeting with a mysterious potential client. It’s all speculative fun and games until the duo find a body in a penthouse apartment and surprise the probable killer, who flees, leaving Cora and Becky to face the cops and explain the crossword puzzle clue on the dead man’s chest. The NYPD’s Sergeant Crowley puts two (dead man, puzzle) and two (Cora, her hand gun) together, and arrests her for the murder. Meanwhile back home in Bakerhaven, police chief Dale Harper is stymied by a seemingly pointless break-in at the town hall. But when more crossword puzzles turn up and more break-ins occur, not to mention at least one more murder, it looks as if there’s a link between the New York and the Bakerhaven crimes. Between Hall’s snappy dialogue and Will Shortz’s puzzles, comic mystery buffs have plenty to enjoy. (Jan.)