ELVIS AND THE BLUE CHRISTMAS CORPSE
Between the most eccentric family this side of the Mason-Dixon Line, a former superstar in a dog suit, a cast of oddball suspects, a charming romance and a catalogue of tasty treats in the back of the book, it’s hard to say what’s the best part of Webb’s newest entry. Callie Valentine-Jones is the spunkiest dog-loving hairdresser to sleuth in a long time, and readers will enjoy reading this just to find out what real trouble her basset hound Elvis can still get into.
At her beloved Uncle Charlie’s request, Callie dresses up as an elf to help him play Santa at a local charity event, with Elvis in his Santa Paws outfit by her side. But when somebody tries turning Santa Charlie into a fry-daddy, the day goes from jolly to grim. Why would anybody want to hurt her uncle, or kill the nice guy who owned the local hardware store? There are many suspects, and Callie, her cousin Lovie and Elvis wade in to find out who wants to turn jingle bells into slay bells. Callie’s also juggling men and trying to keep Lovie on track. If the Valentine ladies can’t figure out what’s going on, Elvis isn’t the only one who is going to be warbling “Blue Christmas.” (KENSINGTON, Oct., 272 pp., $25.95)