As bracing as a mint julep on a hot afternoon, Carolyn Haines's Southern Belle mysteries kick sleuthing up a notch with Sarah Booth Delaney, the sassiest heroine this side of the Mississippi. When Broadway comes to the Delta, Death takes a bow—but Sarah Booth is the star suspect... Zinnia is abuzz: displaced from its New Orleans venue, a red-hot touring production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is opening right in the heart of town, featuring hunky star Graf Mileau! While most folks are excited, Sarah Booth, who had her own brief stint on The Great White Way—and on the arm of Mileau himself—is less than thrilled. Graf is now linked with his costar, Renata Troviola, a dyed-in-the-wool diva who plans to ride Graf's coattails all the way to Hollywood. But Renata's trip to the top comes to a screeching halt on the play's second night, when someone laces her lipstick with cyanide.
The plot thickens when Renata's brother arrives on the scene and makes it clear exactly who he thinks the killer is. It seems Renata was stirring up plenty of drama behind the scenes, making enemies galore: her long-suffering makeup artist, an extremely harsh critic, an angry audience member...even boy toy Graf had a motive. But the most damning evidence points to Sarah Booth herself, and before she can say Big Daddy, she's topping Sheriff Coleman's list of suspects.
Being a P.I. accused of murder is bad enough, but being investigated by the potential love of one's life is downright mortifying. Now, to save her reputation and her romance, Sarah Booth reckons she’ll have to bring the curtain down on a mystery with more twists and turns than the Old Muddy...
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A native of Mississippi, Carolyn Haines lives in Southern Alabama on a farm with her husband, horses, dogs, and cats. She has been honored with an Alabama State Council on the Arts literary fellowship for her writing, a family with enough idiosyncrasies to give her material for the rest of her life, and a bevy of terrific friends. She is a former photojournalist.From Booklist:
A touring production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof brings Sarah Booth Delaney's former boyfriend, Graf Milieu, and her nemesis, actress Renata Trovaioli, to her southern hometown of Zinnia, Mississippi. Graf persuades Sarah Booth to be Renata's understudy, and Sarah Booth gets her opportunity to shine when someone poisons Renata after the first act on opening night. Evidence is found connecting Sarah Booth to the crime, and her boyfriend, cop Coleman Peters, arrests her for Renata's murder. Everyone who knew Renata hated her, however, leaving many other suspects. Released on bail, Sarah Booth and her friend Tinkie hunt for the real killer. Already upset because Coleman seems to be dragging his feet in divorcing his manipulative wife, Sarah Booth is stunned when he seems to believe she is a murderer, leaving her open to advances from Graf. As always in Haines' southern-belle series, the heroine receives advice from a ghost who lives in Sarah Booth's restored mansion, the ever-amusing Jitty. Fans of Nancy Atherton's Aunt Dimity novels will enjoy the ghostly presence in this charming southern cozy. O'Brien, Sue
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