- Series: Five Star Mystery Series
- Hardcover: 256 pages
- Publisher: Five Star (July 20, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1432824988
- ISBN-13: 978-1432824983
- Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 7 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,959,463 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Deadly Reunion (Five Star Mystery Series) Hardcover – August 10, 2011
An unusual cast of characters, including Uncle Stu who becomes Aunt Sue, an unpredictable nymphomaniac and other former classmates who aren t the people they seemed back in high school keep spunky sleuth Cealie Gunther guessing in this fast-paced cozy mystery served with wit and humor and set aboard an Alaskan cruise ship. --Author Marilyn Clay
I loved the heroine of this story. She s a feisty, older heroine who isn t content to sit on the sidelines. I'm giving this one my Socrates' Great Book Alert Award. This book made me truly care about the characters and want to know what made them tick. --Socrates Book Reviews
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Gealie Gunther, a widow, gets a call to join some high school friends for a cruise to Alaska. Just the girls. In true southern fashion she ditters, but when she is enlighten as to a hidden purpose behind the the trip; to help an old friend who is having problems that is a call to the rescue.
Gealie is stunned at the changes in persona and personality of her friends, not realizing their view of her has also changed. After the ship sails a fellow passenger meets his death. An "accident" that Gealie finds an unacceptable conclusion. Murder was not on the itinerary.
When Gealie's current love shows up as the special chief for the cruise her temper flies. One of her reasons for taking the trip was to put a bit of distance and time between her and Gil Thurman. Theirs is a romance that was getting too hot in terms of her new found independence. He wants marriage and she wants freedom to go her own way; maybe.
The mystery is fast paced with plenty of surprises along the way. Under the prose lies a sly sense of humor. One of the most delightful scenes is when Gealie doesn't want to get caught snooping and hids in the dress shop.
This is one reunion you won't want to miss. An excellent summer read with icebergs for background.
Nash Black, author of SANDPRINTS OF DEATH
Tetter was the most popular girl in high school, but admits to Cealie she has a humongous problem that she cannot say anything further about. All the attendees are stunned when Randy, married with grandchildren, arrives as no one expected him to attend. Cealie feels like a frump compared to her toned classmates. Aunt Sue flirts with a younger hunk who is soon found dead at the bottom of stairs. Cealie investigates what she believes was a homicide and not an accident. She wonders whether Tetter's issue is the motive or if Aunt Sue became a psychopath when he surgically became she. Finally there is the question of Randy coming on the cruise.
The latest Cealie Gunter independent amateur sleuth thriller is a charming whodunit when the focus is on the classmates; when the story line concentrates on Cealie's relationship with Gil the plot feels repetitive especially for these who have read Killer Cousins. Still with a strong final twist, fans will enjoy Cealie's inquiry but also when it comes to Gil sing the Lovin' Spoonful's Did You Ever Have to make Up Your Mind?
Then another passenger, not part of the group but with whom one of the group had flirted, is found murdered. Later on another body is found on a nearby iceberg. As the blurb on the book says, the ending is a surprise, but that's because the writer isn't skillful enough to leave subtle clues along the way. Of course, one doesn't want transparent clues either, but there should be some logical lead-up to the solution, but in this case the author just springs it on us at the end, and it is in fact rather implausible. It suddenly dawns on Cealie (another ridiculous name) who the murderer is, and being a TSTL (too stupid to live) heroine, she lets the murderer know she is on to him/her. Of course the murderer, despite having been a smooth operator up until now, and despite the fact that Cealie has no real evidence, confesses all as he/she prepares to kill her. Whoopee.
The characters likewise are boring and flat, and despite being grandparents or of grandparently age, they still act like high school students. Their attitudes towards sex, which seems to be at the heart of everything going on, also remain juvenile. It's okay for a quick, light read, I suppose, but if you're interested in serious, well-written mysteries I don't recommend it.