Talent for Murder

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Overview

Polly Pepper's been hired to be the "nice" judge on "I'll Do Anything to Become Famous," the latest reality T.V. show to hit the airwaves, in which contestants have to prove that they'll go for another's jugular in order to get their names in the headlines. But someone takes the show's theme literally when Thane Cornwall, the relentlessly critical and universally hated British judge on the panel, is found dead with a ten-inch knife in his back...

If there's one thing Polly's ...

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A Talent for Murder (Polly Pepper Mystery Series #3)

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Overview

Polly Pepper's been hired to be the "nice" judge on "I'll Do Anything to Become Famous," the latest reality T.V. show to hit the airwaves, in which contestants have to prove that they'll go for another's jugular in order to get their names in the headlines. But someone takes the show's theme literally when Thane Cornwall, the relentlessly critical and universally hated British judge on the panel, is found dead with a ten-inch knife in his back...

If there's one thing Polly's learned over the years, it's that nothing in Hollywood is ever as it seems. Now she'll have to get to the bottom of this mystery before her star on the Walk of Fame may soon be put out by a cunning killer...

"Bubbly... Fans of comic whodunits will be rewarded." -Publishers Weekly

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

At the start of Jordan's bubbly third sleuth-a-thon to feature Hollywood actress Polly Pepper (after 2008's Final Curtain), Polly becomes a judge on a cheesy reality TV show, I'll Do Anything to Become Famous. When someone plunges a knife into a fellow judge, nasty Brit Thane Cornwall, Polly flips into Miss Marple mode. The prime suspect? Thane's ex-lover, Lisa Marrs, the producer's secretary, found at the crime scene with the murder weapon. Aided by housekeeper Placenta, gay son Tim and her current amour, Beverly Hills detective Randal Archer, Polly uncovers some surprises involving such show contestants as rapper Ped-Xing and Miley Cyrus clone Amy Stout. Dotted with delicious observations on America's obsession with celebrity, this entry should win new fans for Polly, who, as the body count rises, tells the exasperated Archer that she's "a death magnet. And there's nothing you can do about it." Fans of comic whodunits will be rewarded. (June)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews
A TV legend delves into yet another murder. Never one to ride off quietly into the sunset, Emmy-winning actress Polly Pepper has landed a gig as a judge on an appalling reality show, I'll Do Anything to Become Famous. Her fellow judges are Brian Smith, a little-known back-up dancer, and Thane Cornwall, a Brit who makes Simon Cowell sound like Mother Theresa. The mostly untalented contestants do indeed seem willing to do anything to win, and it's quite a surprise that when Thane is murdered, the police pass them by and arrest Lisa Marrs, handsome network president Richard Dartmouth's secretary. As usual, Polly ignores her lover detective Randy Archer's pleas to mind her own business and enlists her gay son Tim and her faithful maid Placenta to help her hunt down the killer. She's piqued into still further efforts when one of the contestants turns up dead at her own lush mansion, the Pepper Plantation. Polly snoops to her heart's content; visits Lisa in jail; and invites everyone from the show to dinner parties, all the while downing copious amounts of her favorite bubbly. Whether readers will have an equally fine old time is open to question. Polly's third jocular adventure (Final Curtain, 2008, etc.) will appeal to only the most diehard fans of Tinseltown trivia. Agent: Joelle Delbourgo/Joelle Delbourgo Associates
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780758229373
  • Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corporation
  • Publication date: 6/1/2009
  • Pages: 352
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

R. T. Jordan is the author of two other Polly Pepper mysteries, Remains to be Scene and Final Curtain. He is a senior publicist with the Walt Disney Studios. He lives in Los Angeles.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 18, 2011

    A fun read. Enjoyed his previous books.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Polly Pepper is an eccentric corker who readers will adore

    Polly Pepper was a Hollywood icon to baby boomers with her own musical-comedy variety show reminiscent of Carol Burnett. That was then. Now she lives at her luxurious Bel Air estate Pepper Plantation with her son Timmy and her maid Placenta. She yearns to get back in the spotlight so she accepts a job as the nice judge on the new reality show I'll Do Anything to Become Famous. The premise is that six contestants will perform, lie, scheme and plant dirty tricks on one another to win the grand prize.--------------

    The nasty judge is Thane Cornwall who on the opening show rips each contestant apart, making them feel worthless; some cry while others seethe with rage inside. Thane fails to arrive for the second show so the producer sends his assistant Lisa to find him. Inside his home, his maid sees Lisa holding a knife while standing over Thane's bloody body. She calls the police who arrest Lisa. Polly visits Lisa in jail and concludes the assistant is innocent in spite of the overwhelming incriminating evidence. A second corpse, this time a contestant, is found in Polly's estate. She links the two homicides though not knowing why beyond the show, but a pit bull stubborn Polly investigates following a scent that could lead to her being the next victim.-----------------

    Polly Pepper is an eccentric corker who readers will adore due to her cute habit of dropping the names of Hollywood stars along with her bubbly spunky outlook. The contests prove they would do anything even kill to win so Polly immediately suspects one of that group to be the murderer. Timmy and Placenta add comedic relief as Polly is no Hollywood mom when it comes to raising her son and is a friend with her maid. R.T. Jordan provides an entertaining amateur sleuth.--------

    Harriet Klausner

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted December 13, 2011

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