Deader Homes and Gardens
A Claire Malloy Mystery
By Joan Hess
(Minotaur Books, Hardcover, 9780312363628, 304pp.)
Publication Date: February 14, 2012
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Claire Malloy discovers that house-hunting can be murder—literally—in the latest entry in Joan Hess's "wildly entertaining series." (Mystery Scene) Back from her somewhat unusual honeymoon, Claire Malloy must face the harsh reality of life with her new husband, police chief Peter Rosen, and her teenage daughter Caron—three people simply can’t fit into her cosy two bedroom apartment. After a week of fruitless looking, she finally finds the perfect
place—a well preserved large house on a large plot of land in an area called Hollow Valley. There are only a few problems. Such as the real estate agent disappeared mid-showing and hasn’t been seen since. And the last owner died in circumstances labeled ’accidental’ but were actually both ’mysterious’ and ’dubious’. The family that owned the estate is now suing the lover of the dead owner over the rights to the property. Oh, and it isn’t really for sale. When the previous owner’s lover dies practically at her feet, Claire decides to take matters into her own hands. After all, to get the house of her dreams, first she has to find a killer. And all’s fair in love, war, and real estate.
JOAN HESS is the author of both the Arly Hanks and the Claire Malloy mystery series, most recently Mummy Dearest. She now lives in Austin, Texas.