Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Murder on a Hot Tin Roof - Amanda Matetsky

Murder on a Hot Tin Roof
A Paige Turner Mystery
Amanda Matetsky
Berkley Prime Crime


It’s the summer of 1955 in Manhattan, and without air conditioning, the heat is brutal. The heat doesn’t stop Paige Turner from doing her job, but it sure slows her down a bit. Paige, left a widow at 29, is breaking into the ranks of crime writers by working at a rather trashy true crime magazine. She supplements that income by publishing fictionalized accounts of her real life cases in paperback novels. As a woman crime writer, she’s a rarity, and she runs afoul of the boys’ club atmosphere more often than she’d like; but being widowed has forced her to fend for herself, and she’s really rather good at it.

When Paige’s best friend and neighbor, Abby, invites her to see a production of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” Paige accepts mainly as a way to spend a few hours in an air-conditioned theater. The star of the show, Gray Gordon, also a friend of Abby, is immensely successful. The two women drop by his apartment the next morning to congratulate him, and are shocked to discover the promising actor dead, in a pool of blood. Gray’s eccentric neighbor, Willy, quickly becomes the prime suspect. Not only is Paige convinced of his innocence; she’s convinced that the detective in charge is only homing in on Willy because of his lifestyle. True to form, Paige decides to take matters into her own hands and investigate.

Each installment in this charming series is a welcome addition. The author manages to make Paige both accurate for a woman in the 1950s, and a woman with whom modern readers can easily relate. It’s true, and Paige herself admits, that she’s drawn to danger. But she walks that fine line between bravery and foolishness quite well. As always, the mystery is both interesting and entertaining, with enough twists to satisfy any mystery reader.

Rating: 7 ½
November 2006
ISBN# 0-425-21293-9 (paperback)


Post a Comment

<< Home