Nela scanned the rest of the disjointed message, obviously written in haste. But Chloe could have a day or a week or a month at her disposal and her communications would still careen from thought to fact to remembrance to irrelevance. She placed the map on the passenger seat and dropped the key into her purse. Nela drove out of the garage into a brilliant day. She squinted against a sun that was surely stronger than in LA.
Whatever happened, she intended to have fun, leaving behind the grayness now that was LA, and the sadness. Occasional winter-bare trees dotted softly rolling dun-colored countryside. Nela passed several horse farms.
Publication Order of Death On Demand Books
Cattle huddled with their backs to the north wind. The usual tacky billboards dotted the roadside.
Nela felt more and more relaxed. The little VW chugged sturdily south despite its age.
The traffic was fairly heavy and it was nearer two hours when she turned onto the exit to Craddock. Ranch-style houses predominated. After a few blocks, the homes grew more substantial, the lots larger, the houses now two and three stories, including faux colonials, Mediterranean villas, and French mansards. Nela noted house numbers. She was getting close. She came around a curve. Her eyes widened at a majestic home high on a ridge, a Georgian mansion built of limestone with no houses visible on either side, the grounds stretching to woods.
Nela slowed. Surely not.
Death by Surprise
Chloe had clearly written of a garage apartment. Keep going past the main drive around a curve to a blacktop road into the woods.
It dead ends behind the house. Miss Grant started living there when she first came to work for Harris Webster. She went from being his personal assistant to helping run the whole deal. Be sure and park in the garage.
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No opener or anything, just pull up the door. Big contrast. So everything always works out for the best. I mean, except for Miss Grant. Nela pressed the accelerator. Names bounced in her mind like errant Ping-Pong balls. Grant, Webster, Jugs. And, the dame who blackmails the family, and the surprising killer, are just as hardhearted as the blackmailers and killers in other hard-boiled mysteries.
Judging by Death by Surprise, Carolyn Hart might have succeeded at hard-boiled private eye novels. But, maybe K. Carlisle isn't as hardhearted as she needed to be. Death by Surprise is the story of cagey woman determined to out-maneuver a wily killer. It's just one more piece of proof that Carolyn Hart is a Grand Master. Carolyn Hart's website is www. A woman is out to clear her cousin of murder charges after a blackmailer targeting the wealthy Carlisle family turns up dead.
Books by Carolyn Hart
Carlisle and her cousin Kenneth Carlisle both grew up rich. Kenneth is a corporate lawyer in an exclusive Northern California seaside community while K. She takes whatever kind of case walks in her door. But trouble appears one day when Francine Boutelle shows up pretending she wants to write an expose of the Carlisle family, including some dirt on K. Francine has visited most of the family and is willing to keep the family secrets in exchange for cash. When Kenneth is accused of murdering the blackmailer, K. Call me a caveman if you like, but prior to having an unexpected envelope drop on my desk containing an unsolicited advance copy of this re-issued novel, I had never heard of this author.
It would be fair to say, I certainly know who she is now after quickly devouring this short-ish book. Hart has authored over 50 books, in a writing career that launched in with the publication of her first novel, The Secret of the Cellars.
She has several popular series to her name including the book long, Death on Demand books which show no sign of abating. Back to Death By Surpise Putting aside my immature prejudices and cracking the spine, I was soon engrossed in this satisfying tale of blackmail and murder. When Francine Boutelle arrives on her doorstep, the rationale becomes instantly clear. Even the straight-laced, up-standing K. Fast forward to the pre-ordained family conference and the strategy the family seeks to adopt is set.
Overall, I found Death By Surprise to be clever, interesting, enjoyable and satisfying. Nov 05, Terry Ambrose rated it it was amazing. Those secrets could destroy their reputations, careers and political ambitions. Carlisle and her cousin Kenneth Carlisle grew up together in the rich Carlisle family home. She has a storefront office in a tough part of town and is dating the Democratic nominee for the District House seat. Kenneth has an extremely lucrative tax practice, income from the family trust, and a very wealthy wife.
He has political ambitions and is currently the Republican nominee for the District House seat. Francine interviews the Carlisle family members for an article she hopes will expose all their dirty little secrets. Francine realizes she can make more money by blackmailing the family instead of writing the article and issues her demand. The family wants to pay, but K. Kenneth is arrested for the murder, prompting K. When there is a second, related murder, K. Carolyn Hart has developed a strong female voice with K. The novel is well written, has a strong plot, and reminiscent of the best classic detective movies.
View 1 comment. I really loved this. I think this was re-released from her early works. It is well-written and plotted. I enjoyed the main character. She was an honest, admirable sort.