Backstabber (Hitchcock Sewell Series #5)

( 4 )


"Trouble is on the way when the corpse isn't even cold and Hitch is already on the scene. Before the police. It's murder - a kitchen knife in the back - and the apparent killer wants Hitch to scoop up the body and dump it into an unmarked grave. Our boy might play fast and loose in other aspects of his life, but stupid he is not: He's not about to get dragged into this mess. But it's too late. The police soon get wind of Hitch's presence at the early morning murder scene and they want answers - answers that Hitch can't readily provide."
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"Trouble is on the way when the corpse isn't even cold and Hitch is already on the scene. Before the police. It's murder - a kitchen knife in the back - and the apparent killer wants Hitch to scoop up the body and dump it into an unmarked grave. Our boy might play fast and loose in other aspects of his life, but stupid he is not: He's not about to get dragged into this mess. But it's too late. The police soon get wind of Hitch's presence at the early morning murder scene and they want answers - answers that Hitch can't readily provide." "Meanwhile, across town, unsavory doings at a local nursing home have piqued Hitch's interest, especially when an elderly friend residing there takes a swift and fatal turn for the worse. Pursued as a potential coconspirator in one murder while attempting to sort out the facts surrounding the suspicious nursing home death, Hitch barely has time to keep up with his day job." But he does. And nobody turns the turf with more tenacity, wit, and charm than Hitchcock Sewell. Aided by his ever-lovely ex-wife Julia, his sly Aunt Billy, and a big blonde backup singer for a local country-and-western band, Hitch again makes the dark arts of crime fighting and interment a joy to behold.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
What wisecracking mortician/amateur sleuth could resist the lure of a mysterious nighttime summons? Certainly not Hitchcock Sewell, whose youthful curiosity exuberantly portrayed by reader Lawlor leads him to aid his friend Jonathan "Sisco" Fontaine. Hitch arrives at the house of Sisco's girlfriend, Polly Weischeit, only to discover that Polly is actually a married woman, and her husband has been murdered. Polly and Sisco want Hitch to haul away the body in his hearse and "quietly tuck it into a grave," but he nixes that idea and convinces them to call the police, though not soon enough to avoid becoming a murder suspect himself. Lawlor assumes the same soft, subdued voice for virtually all of the book's female characters, lending them little personality or emotional depth. Fortunately, the story's constant stream of funeral home jokes and its fast-paced plot keep the entertainment level high. Simultaneous release with the Hyperion hardcover (Forecasts, June 28). (July) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
From The Critics
"Cockey's contribution to the genre has less to do with his hero's career...than with his wit, which is ceaseless, remorseless and fun." (Washington Post)
Kirkus Reviews
Hitchcock Sewell, Baltimore's crime-busting mortician, undertakes to solve a homicide before the cops know it's happened. Sisco Fontaine was never the yearbook staff's choice as most likely to succeed. Now Sisco has a body on his hands. The stiff is Jake Weisheit, owner of the kitchen floor on which he now reposes, dagger protruding from his back. Also present in Mr. Weisheit's plush suburban home is Polly Weisheit, his relict. In a manner of speaking she belongs to Sisco as well, though lovers have shakier legal standing. All Sisco wants from his old schoolmate Hitch is some help disposing of the corpse. He insists that he's innocent, but he's not eager to dial 911 only a few days after publicly threatening to kill the late Mr. Weisheit. Wisely, Hitch turns thumbs down on Sisco's request, but he can never resist an intriguing homicide. Between prepping corpses and beguiling a nonstop array of local females, he proves once again that when it comes to sleuthing, a ratiocinative funeral director can do more than sniff the formaldehyde. Up till now, Hitch's ebullience has carried the series (Murder in the Hearse Degree, 2003, etc.). But when the energy it feeds on flags in this fifth outing, disbelief sets in. Agency: Arthur Pine Associates
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786867134
  • Publisher: Hyperion
  • Publication date: 7/7/2004
  • Series: Hitchcock Sewell Series, #5
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.81 (d)

Meet the Author

Tim Cockey is the award-winning author of the Hitchcock Sewell novels, including The Hearse You Came In On, Hearse of a Different Color, The Hearse Case Scenario, Murder in the Hearse Degree, and Backstabber. He has been a story analyst for many major film and television companies, including American Playhouse, ABC, and Hallmark Entertainment. He grew up in Baltimore and now lives in New York City.

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Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 4 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2005

    Fast, Funny, Just a Great Read

    I just love ALL the books by this author. All his books are great. They have good characters that show up in most of his books. Very much like Stephanie Plum and her characters. After reading all his books, I can not seem to find another author that grabs me from the fist page. Please hurry up and write more!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2004

    A great 'Who Done It'.

    After reading the first four pages, I was HOOKED. I thought if the rest of the book was as intriguing as those few pages, I would not be able to put the book down until I discovered ¿Who Done It¿. And, I was right. I also thought the plot was going to be a simple one where the reader discovers who killed the victim. Boy! Was I wrong! The plot was a spider¿s web of intrigue. There was more than one murder to learn about and plenty of characters to keep you guessing on who killed who. The first victim was found with a knife in his back. Between his wife, daughter, son and mother, the less than normal family was discovered. The man¿s love letters were found in his library and they were not written to his wife. Ah ha, another possible killer. The story had dead people who are frozen into a sitting position, bright orange burial caskets, a nursing home where the patient are starting to complain about their care, seagulls, a pet dog and a few broken ribs, not to mention an ex-wife who our lead character was still on friendly terms. The wisecracking which ran throughout the book, reminded me of the 1940¿s stereotypical private eye. It was wonderfully refreshing and gave the reader a laugh at every turn. The lead character¿s job was also not one normally associated with someone who ¿snoops¿. He was a funeral director in partnership with his Aunt. Right up until the very last pages, I had no idea who created all the mayhem. Oh, I had chosen early on who I thought was responsible but then I changed my mind as I read on and continued changing my mind the farther I read. I noted that Tim Cockey as written four other books based on the lead character. I was sorry I hadn¿t read them but they will be on my list of books to read. Grab a copy of Backstabber and you will be in for a wonderful adventure of Who Done It.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 4, 2004

    Hitch does it again

    I enjoyed this 5th outing of the Hitchcock Sewell series. It is an interesting and amusing book that can be read anywhere from the home to the beach. I am recommending this book to all.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    fine Hitchcock amateur sleuth investigation

    In the Baltimore area, Sisco Fontaine has a slight problem. Lying on the kitchen floor is the murdered corpse of Jake Weisheit with a knife protruding from his back. Sisco has been sleeping with Jake¿s spouse Polly and recently in a public display of ire he threatened to kill Jake. Obviously the cops can back up with evidence that Sisco had motive, means, and apparently opportunity making him the prime suspect in what appears to be a murder of passion.---- A bit upset, Sisco knows only one person who works with the dead, former classmate mortician Hitchcock Sewell. He calls Hitch, but all he wants from his newly rediscovered buddy is to dispose of the body as he knows what will happen to him if the police investigate the murder. Hitch refuses, but puts aside the other bodies, a horde of females wanting to share a coffin, and the formaldehyde high to determine whether Sisco is a BACKSTABBER.---- The fifth Hitchcock amateur sleuth investigation is a solid entry in a series a bit off the norm, but always fun to read. As usual, once the audience accepts Hitch as an expert crime investigator, which takes a bit of acceptance, fans will have the usual good time. Hitch is the center of the tale as he keeps it glued together whether he prepares a corpse for a funeral service or making inquiries that lead to the local police wanting to bury him for his interference. Tim Cockey provides an amusing look at the art of dying from the two perspective approaches that one of Baltimore¿s finest protagonists brings to those who dearly departed.---- Harriet Klausner

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