Death for Dessert
by T. Dawn Richard
mildly hard-boiled mystery!
Star (September 2004)
for Dessert offers an
unexpected sleuth for the setting who turns the senior citizen
residence upside down. The mysteries carefully unfold, not truly solved
to the end. The slightly twisted humor and sleuth carries the reader
through the pages at a quick clip.
cheating doctor husband has gone one step too far.
Although raised to be proper, she is one senior citizen whose husband
is not going to leave her for some young Bambi and kill her spirit. She
dumps sugar in his gas tank, checks herself into a senior citizen's
home and watch out! She's just getting started. All the residents
seem to avoid the strange Mrs. Berkowitz who
lives next to her, but not May List, at least not until she turns up
dead. But wait, what are those crumbs on he corpse's lips? Weren't
those the brownies that she had given Mrs. Berkowitz to bribe
information out of her? May List must prove her innocence before the
corpse is discovered. How can such a proper lady cause such a ruckus?
One hilarious escapade after another ensues.
As a character and
sleuth, May List certainly stands apart from
Miss Marple, Jessica Fletcher and other mild senior citizens. Except
for absence of the violence and explicit sex typical of the genre, this
mystery borders on the hard-boiled. The writing style is intentionally
a bit coarse and the sleuth's sees her world with a perspective
dynamically askew from the stereotypical elderly sleuth.
Once or twice the
literary jokes fall slightly flat but not often.
Otherwise, the language lay stimulates and amuses, such as when the
author turns "Lord of the Dance" into "Lord Help Us of the Dance" in a
particularly suspenseful crazy predicament. I thoroughly enjoyed this
mystery as a very
refreshing change from the typical tame sweet cozy mystery.
Reviewed by Merrimon,
Merrimon Book Reviews