- Series: Hemlock Falls Mystery (Book 15)
- Mass Market Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: Berkley (November 6, 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0425218341
- ISBN-13: 978-0425218341
- Product Dimensions: 4.3 x 0.6 x 7.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 10 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,651,284 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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A Carol for a Corpse (Hemlock Falls Mystery) Mass Market Paperback – November 6, 2007
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Ok. Where do I start? The book starts with the sisters visiting their local bank where they are forcefull shown that they are one million dollars in debt and stand to have their loans called unless they do something. That "something" turns out to be a deal with the publishing empire of a Donald Trump knockoff who will rent the inn to tape some TV shows on a quarterly basis and launch a line of food products developed by Meg Quilliam. There are some strings attached to this though: the TV shows will be filmed by an old acquaintance of Quill's who was more focused on being a cheerleader and getting the rich boys then being nice to her fellow students. Also, the bank orders Quill to have an efficiency expert check out what is going on in the inn and provide some recommendations. So, one thread is the ongoing financial difficulties that are pulling the sisters down.
A second thread is the whole story line with the obnoxious wheeler dealer and his trophy wife and how they treat everyone else like dirt. I suppose it is fun to read about how phony the whole setup is and see the shots being taken at Donald Trump, the Apprentice TV show and the whole culture of self-aggrandizement.
The third thread is the life of the two sisters. While Meg was engaged before - there is no romantic interest in her life right now. While Quill is married and continuous references are made to her desire to have children - a desire that is sure to get fulfilled even though her husband is away in some foreign country for months at a time. The times when he is with his wife must be quite exciting - and productive.
Another thread in the mix is that this is the holiday period and many houses have decorations outside of them. This year the decorations include those inflatable ones - and someone in town is shooting the santas and other inflatable devices with a paint gun. Quill takes on the task of finding out who is doing that.
Oh, you ask? Where is the murder mystery? Well, it takes about half the book to get to the murder and there is absolutely no mystery in who will be killed, nor who performed the deed. Indeed, this was so obvious all along the trail that I was practically shouting at the written words with frustration for how long it took everything to develop. This was clearly an afterthought.
Another afterthought must be the cover design of this book. There is absolutely no relationship between the drawing and anything in the book. The cover shows a man's feet in an entrance door to a house - the murder in this story takes place on skis outdoors, half a mile or more from the inn. While the drawing shows a sign proclaiming this as the Inn at Hemlock Falls, the description of the entrance to the inn is nothing like the drawing. Did the illustrator look at any part of the book or even bother to speak with the editor or author? Why would the editors let something this silly take place?
I guess this last was the last straw for me and the reason I gave this book such a low grade even though I really like the series as a whole. Let's hope for a better showing next time.
They also sign a deal with L'Apertif magazine who will feature their jams and jellies and televise a show they are producing four times a year. They will tape the cooking show Good Taste at the inn and it will last a month for each taping. Lydia Kingsfield is the star of the magazine and the show and her husband Zeke, who is even more obnoxious than his odious wife is a notorious larger than life business man who has cheated many people out of their money with his unethical ventures. His body is found at the Inn's ski run; it looks as if he was killed by negligence, but Quill believes otherwise. She sets out to prove murder occurred, but finds half the State had a motive to want Zeke dead.
A CAROL FOR A CORPSE is a charming cozy that puts readers in the holiday spirit due in large part to the vivid picturesque descriptions of Christmas décor, the mouthwatering food, the feeling of good will, but especially the Scrooge attitude of Quill. She is ruthless when it comes to keeping her cherished sister safe and is passionate about the inn. Thus she needs no more motives to investigate the death of Zeke than the possible harm to Meg or the loss of the inn, as she rejects the negligence ruling. Fans of the series will enjoy the freshness in the story line due to a couple of interesting surprises, making this a merry Yuletide amateur sleuth tale.