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The Cane Mutiny (Den of Antiquity Series #13)

The Cane Mutiny (Den of Antiquity Series #13)

3.5 4
by Tamar Myers

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Raising Cane

Abigail Timberlake Washburn understands the antiques game is a gamble — so she doesn't know what to expect when she wins the bidding for the contents of an old locker that has been sealed up for years. It's a delightful surprise when she discovers inside a collection of exquisite old walking sticks — and a not-so-delightful one when she


Raising Cane

Abigail Timberlake Washburn understands the antiques game is a gamble — so she doesn't know what to expect when she wins the bidding for the contents of an old locker that has been sealed up for years. It's a delightful surprise when she discovers inside a collection of exquisite old walking sticks — and a not-so-delightful one when she pulls out a decrepit gym bag containing . . . a human skull!

The last thing the diminutive South Carolina antiques dealer needs is to be suspected of foul play. So she grabs her chatty assistant (and future sister-in-law), C.J., and heads out to search for a killer they can stick it to. But this cane case will be no walk in the park — with its arcane clues hinting at poaching, counterfeiting, smuggling . . . and homicide, of course. And when a fresh corpse turns up, things are about to get really sticky for Abby and her staff of one.

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Den of Antiquity Series , #13
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.18(w) x 6.75(h) x 0.96(d)

Read an Excerpt

The Cane Mutiny

By Tamar Myers

HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Copyright ©2006 Tamar Myers
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0060535199

Chapter One

The city of Charleston, South Carolina, has more ghosts than natives. But it is not quite true, as one rude tourist recently put it, that our ghosts -- or, Apparition Americans, as they prefer to be called nowadays -- show more life than their flesh and blood counterparts. I was not particularly surprised, therefore, to see a pirate hobbling down the alley behind my antiques shop, the Den of Antiquity.

It happened one exceptionally foggy night in early April, when Mama and I were returning home from a musical recital at the College of Charleston. I'd decided to stop by my shop on King Street to retrieve a book on antique canes that I had recently purchased. My plans for the remainder of my evening were to snuggle up in bed next to my handsome husband, Greg, and peruse the book while he watched the end of a basketball game. Mama's plans were to curl up in front of her own TV and watch reruns of Leave It to Beaver.

At any rate, upon seeing the Apparition American, I stomped on the brakes, and as soon as we'd jerked to a stop, I flipped on the high beams. Unfortunately the light reflected off the moisture in the air, and in the split second it took to put the low beams back on, the ghost had disappeared.

"Did you see that, Mama?"

"Abby, I'm old, notblind."

"That was a pirate, wasn't it?"

Mama sighed. "A very handsome pirate. If my arthritis wasn't acting up, I'd jump out and chase after him. Wherever it is he went."

My heart was still pounding, and my legs too weak to support my full weight, so I remained behind the wheel of my silver Mercedes. I did, however, drive the entire length of the Alley, and finding no one about, either spectral or real, hightailed it back to my house on Squiggle Lane.

When Mama and I burst into the den, where my handsome hubby was already deeply absorbed in the game, we must have brought with us a surge of intense energy.

"So the concert was that good," Greg said, without shifting his gaze.

"The concert was just okay," Mama said. "It's the pirate who's put the wind back in my bloomers."

I cringed. "Mama!"

"You have to admit it, Abby, he was really a hittie."

"The word's hottie, Mama."

"That's what you think. I meant what I said. If he was twenty years younger, I'd hit on him."


Despite the fact that my mother, who stands all of five feet tall, is trapped in a 1950s time warp along with June Cleaver, she at times displays disconcerting flashes of lust. If it were not for the fact that my minimadre is still a virgin -- two children notwithstanding -- and will forever stay that way, I assure you, I would have been really creeped out. As it was, I felt nauseous.

"Abby, I'm only human."

"No, you're not. Besides, he wasn't all that cute."

Greg pressed the mute button on his remote and jumped off the sofa. "What's all this about a pirate? Or did you say 'parrot'?"

Meanwhile my sweetie pie jumped off the sofa as well, ambled toward me, and rubbed his cheeks against my calves. This sweetie pie, by the way, is my ten-pound orange tabby, who sometimes -responds to his name, Dmitri. Greg, on the other hand, seldom rubs his cheeks against my calves, and never responds to Dmitri.

"We saw a ghost," Mama said. "A really cute pirate."

"We saw an Apparition American and he was ugly enough to turn a train down a dirt road."

Dmitri purred loudly.

Greg smiled. "As ugly as that?"

"Even uglier. I bet that when he was born his mama had to borrow a baby to take to church."

"He was six feet tall," Mama said. "Just like Greg. And he had a huge black beard." She gasped. "I bet it was the ghost of Blackbeard."

"He was no taller than you, Mama. And he didn't have a beard; only stubble, and a scar that went from his left ear to his nostril. And those beady dark eyes -- I'll never forget them. He even had a wooden leg, Greg, just like the stereotype."

"Yes, he did have a wooden leg." Mama agreed reluctantly. "But it was cute."

Greg laughed before kissing me on the mouth and then pecking Mama on the cheek. "Well, at least you two finally agree on something."

I bristled at what amounted to a dismissal. "I didn't say his leg was cute."

"But both of yours definitely are." Greg winked before plopping back on the couch. He works long hours as a shrimper and is no couch potato. I certainly did not begrudge him his method of relaxation.

"What about mine?" Mama demanded.

I pushed her gently from the room. For much of the time since Daddy died nineteen years ago, hit in the head by a seagull with a brain tumor the size of a walnut, Mama has been competing with me for the attention of men. I'm happily married again, and no longer competing, but I'm not sure the message has really gotten through to Mama.

"Abby, are you trying to get rid of your dear old mama?"


"Why I never!" She stamped a petite pump and stalked dramatically to her very comfortably appointed room. One that I pay for, I might add.

Greg waited until we could no longer hear her. "So, Mrs. Ghostbuster, what are your plans for the rest of the evening?"

"Well, I thought we would get ready for bed and then I'd read this book on antique canes while you finished the game, but with all the excitement, I forgot to get the book from my shop."

"I have a better idea. What if we get ready for bed, and then instead of me watching the game, we come up with creative ways to use the bed that don't involve sleep?"

Both Mama and the pirate were soon forgotten.


Excerpted from The Cane Mutiny by Tamar Myers Copyright ©2006 by Tamar Myers. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

Tamar Myers is the author of the Belgian Congo series and the Den of Antiquity series as well as the Pennsylvania-Dutch mysteries. Born and raised in the Congo, she lives in North Carolina.

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Cane Mutiny (Den of Antiquity Series #13) 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Bedelia More than 1 year ago
I've read this whole series,but this is my last one!! Slowly she has been drifting away from cleverly written mysteries with funny lines into shallow stories with lots of stupid silliness thrown in instead of mystery. CJ has taken over completely. She is a minor (and should have remained very minor) character. Now even the writer has her mind - just terrible. This book is the last one this waste my time or money on.
harstan More than 1 year ago
Abby Timberlake, owner of the antique store the Den of Antiquity, is the high bidder at a locked trunk sale in a storage center. Inside were a bunch of canes that Abby put out in a display in the hopes of attracting buyers. Two mornings in a row she comes to open the store to see the canes scattered all over the place and assumes her assistant and soon to be sister in law CJ failed to clean up before closing. CJ. says that when she left the canes were in the display.---- Also in the locked trunk is a bag with a skull in it. Abby thinks it is a human skull and after being arrested for ¿unauthorized¿ possession of human remains by two ignorant policemen she is out on bail. She goes to the bidders who bought a cane from their store. She asks each person why he bid on the item and when she gets her answers she leaves but his housekeeper/lover runs after her telling her she has important information. Before she can tell her what it is they are interrupted and a few days later the housekeeper is murdered. Feeling that all the unusual and tragic things that have been happening are linked to her winning the bid, Abby starts snooping around for answers and almost gets herself killed.----- This is the thirteenth Den of Antiquity mystery and it is as fresh and charming as the first book in this delightful cozy series. The cast of characters, including the heroine, are a bunch eccentrics their antics make the audience chuckle out loud. The who-done-it is cleverly thought out, complex and totally impossible to figure out. Tamar Myers scores another winner with THE CAINE MUTINY.----- Harriet Klausner