Available for house calls-- and homicide...
When cardiologist Dr. Andrew Fenimore isn't mending weak hearts, he's solving crimes in Philadelphia's wealthy Society Hill. But murder is the last thing the good doctor expects when he befriends a teenage boy trying to bury his dead cat. As the two dig a grave for the cat's final resting place in a vacant lot-- which happens to be an ancient burial ground-- they discover a fresh corpse, buried feet flexed, facing east, according to Lenape Indian tradition.
Fenimore's P.I. pastime starts to become a distinct health hazard as he and his young sidekick follow the trail of the deceased young woman straight to the son of a colleague, one of Philadelphia's most prominent surgeons. Surely the scion of a fine old Philadelphia family and his Indian fiancee ignited some powerful passions. But are they enough to risk trying for the perfect murder in a place where civility rules with an iron fist in a velvet glove?
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The Doctor Digs a Grave
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 29, 4:45 P.M.
The driver edged the van carefully through the alley (there was no more than a two-inch leeway on either side) and entered a gloomy space about the size of a suburban backyard. Although still daylight, the enclosure was dim because it was surrounded by the rear ends of tall buildingsa bank, an apartment house, a parking garage, and a hotel.
Making a neat U-turn, the driver backed the van across the entrance to the alley, blocking a view of the enclosure from anyone passing by on the street. He jumped to the ground, moved around to the back of the van, and opened the twin doors. He drew a spade from inside and, choosing a spot a few yards from the van, began to dig. Now and then he stopped to wipe the sweat from his forehead with his sleeve. It was warm for October, and the dirt was packed down hard. It took almost an hour to dig a hole two feet by four feet and about five feet deep.
Satisfied, he tossed the spade into the back of the van and wiped his hands on his jeans. The rectangle of sky framed above the four buildings was still light. Too light to finish the job. The smell of hamburger reached him from a nearby McDonald's.He was hungry. Hopping into the rear of the van, he lifted a corner of an oil-stained tarpaulin. The tarpaulin covered a mound slightly smaller than the hole he had just dug. A quick glance underneath, and he let it fall.
Slamming the back doors, the driver made his way around to the front. The sound of the motor starting up reverberated in the small space. He backed the van carefully over the hole he had just dug and parked. He walked once around the van, checking to make sure the doors were locked, before turning down the alley on foot. It wouldn't hurt to leave for a few minutes, long enough for him to grab a bite. By the time he got back, it would be dark and he could finish the job.
THE DOCTOR DIGS A GRAVE. Copyright © 1998 by Robin Hathaway. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles or reviews. For information, address St. Martin's Press, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10010.
What People are Saying About This
"A perfect combination of the old and the new. The plot is as mysterious as old-fashioned mysteries, but the telling is sleek and fashionable and right up to date. The novel has charm, wiles, and its own underplayed style of humor. Robin Hathaway is a real find." Ed Gorman, Mystery Scene
"Newcomer Hathaway maintains an easygoing, unpretentious touch even with her complex plot. Native Indian lore, heavily technical medical background, and nebbishy but nice hero. Lovers of hospital drama, in particular, will welcome a return visit." Kirkus Reviews