Regular readers will be pleased to know that Childs once again offers not only a competently constructed cozy, but scrapbooking and craft tips as well. The setting is filled with enough detail that even readers who haven’t visited New Orleans will feel like they’ve been there. While the clues to the culprit are fairly placed, they are also slight enough that the solution comes a bit out of left field.
When Carmella Bertrand, owner of Memory Mine scrapbook shop, and her friend Ava Gruiex stop in to St. Tristan’s Church to check on a display, they encounter one of their scrapbooking friends being attacked by a cloaked and hooded figure. Now their friend lies dead and a valuable antique crucifix is missing. Warned by her boyfriend, Detective Edgar Babcock, not to snoop, Carmella nonetheless feels this crime personally, leading her to investigate various corners of New Orleans’ French Quarter — and directly into the path of danger. (PRIME CRIME, Oct., 336 pp., $25.95)