"A humorous romantic cozy"
The geriatric residents and the staff of the Valhalla
Springs Retirement Community in the Ozarks as well as the
citizens of Sanity, Missouri are excited over the arrival
of the circus. However, the community manager Hannah
Garvey turns into numbing shock when circus magician Reilly
Boone introduces himself claiming to be her long lost
father. He knows a lot about Hannah, but her main squeeze
Sheriff David Henrickson thinks Reilly is pulling a sleight
of the hand con.
The situation turns deadly when Reilly's wife and
partner AnnaLeigh takes a bullet during a performance.
Reilly has the motive (beneficiary of a large life
insurance policy), the means (their joint act that included
a gun prop), the opportunity (during a performance), and a
history (two previously dead wives). Everyone except
Hannah believes he killed his spouse. As Hannah sets out
to prove her father could never commit murderer, her
elderly charges don clown costumes to infiltrate the circus
and keep their beloved manager safe.
NORTH OF CLEVER, the third Hannah Garvey "sedate"
Ozarks tale, retains the wonderful wackiness of the
previous novels (see EAST OF PECULIAR and SOUTH OF SANITY)
due to the endearing, but ultra-eccentric ensemble. Though
the story line is a romantic amateur sleuth tale, the plot
is much more humorous than it is a taut suspense thriller.
The characters leave readers laughing from one incident to
another so that fans will impatiently await West of
whatever and hopefully other in-between "due" directions on
the amusing compass of Sanity.
Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted November 13, 2001