Death by Surprise

We rated this book:


This mystery is in Raymond Chandler’s “noir” style, though set in the eighties and in a Northern California beach town. K.C. Carlisle, despite her wealthy background, takes law cases that help the underdog. Kenneth, her corporate lawyer cousin, coddles the rich and lives well.

Wealth runs in this family. Great-grandfather Carlisle started it, and his grandson left a trust to be dissolved among the current Carlisles when the youngest turns twenty-one. Priscilla turned twenty-one a week ago.

Enter Francine Boutelle, who says she’s writing an article about the family for “Inside Out,” a cheap magazine specializing in exposés. Actually, she wants to blackmail K. C. for $50,000 over some secret about K. C.’s deceased father. In a meeting to discuss the trust’s dissolution, it appears all the beneficiaries have been approached by Francine, and each has something to hide.

When K. C. visits Francine, planning to tape her blackmail threats, she finds Francine sprawled on the love seat, strangled. Then Harry Nichols, owner of The Beacon, arrives with a note that makes Kenneth the prime suspect. It’s up to K. C. to clear her cousin.

A complex plot with a satisfying resolution.

Reviewed By:

Star Count 4/5
Format Trade
Page Count 200 pages
Publisher Seventh Street Books
Publish Date 2013-Nov-05
ISBN 9781616148690 Buy this Book
Issue January 2014
Category Mystery, Crime, Thriller


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