YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO REMAIN PUZZLED
It's Groucho Marx meets Jessica Fletcher as Puzzle Lady Cora Felton takes
on small-town secrets and hands out romantic advice. Hall's tale is slick and laugh-out-loud funny, with witty banter and eccentric characters. He catches a reader's attention from the first page with crackling dialogue, a convoluted plot and an intriguing wrap-up. Cora's sharp tongue could sharpen the lead in a pencil as she looks into murder, theft and blackmail. A definite keeper.
As if she weren't busy enough investigating the theft of antique chairs from a rundown shop, now she's got to find out who hated Benny enough to kill him -- and set her up for the crime. Cora's getting help from her clever niece, Sherry, Sherry's reporter fiance and, unwittingly, her niece's obsessed ex-husband, to tie three separate crimes into one neat package before the grand jury indicts her. (Bantam, Nov., 320 pp., $24.00)