By #1 Kindle bestselling author of "Christmas Is Murder," published by Midnight Ink.
Cozy up with a margarita or a cup of tea and settle in for a contemporary whodunit à la Agatha Christie.
When Scottish barrister Rex Graves and fiancée Helen disembark in Key West during a cruise to Mexico, they stumble upon a B & B where a bizarre double murder has just taken place. Victims Merle and Taffy Dyer, dressed as clowns in celebration of Key West’s Fantasy Fest, have been served up cold for breakfast in their own kitchen.
The intrepid, resourceful and downright curious Rex, gaining recognition as a world-famous sleuth, is all for abandoning the cruise and delving into murder instead. Little does he suspect what horrors fill the gingerbread-trimmed Dolphin Inn, and who among the guests and family may be a killer in disguise.
Excerpt of MURDER AT THE DOLPHIN INN. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
The Dolphin Inn
Key West, FL
#1, McCullers Suite ~ Bill Reid
#2, Tennessee Williams Suite ~ Mae & Emily Hart
#3, Hemingway Suite ~ Diane S. Dyer
#4, Jimmy Buffet Suite ~ Dennis & Peggy Barber
#5, Robert Frost Suite ~ vacant
#6, Audubon Suite ~ Chuck & Alma Shumaker
#7, Writer’s Garret ~ Michelle Cuzzens & Ryan Ford
#8, Poet’s Attic ~ vacant
Gift-wrapped in yellow ribbon, the Dolphin Inn stood amid a lush landscape abloom with orchids, red-spiked bromeliads, and Chinese Palm fans. White porches decorated with gingerbread trim wrapped long arms around the lilac clapboard, while a transom window depicting frolicking blue dolphins topped the Victorian mansion’s front door. Hard to imagine a double homicide taking place here, Rex thought. The bed-and-breakfast was, to use a British expression, rather “twee.”
Geckos skittered before his sandals on the brick path that led to a white picket fence separating the property from the street, where he had left his fiancée among a crowd of onlookers. Undeterred by the traffic cones, their number had increased in the half hour or so since he had been inside the guest house. There would doubtless have been more spectators had it not been the morning after the annual Fantasy Fest Parade, a night of heavy drinking and revelry, which he and Helen had missed as they sailed from Miami to Mallory Square on a Carnival cruise ship.
Empty beer cans and strings of iridescent beads littered the sun-dappled sidewalks of the street. Rex derived no small measure of satisfaction thinking that the fall weather back home in Scotland would be gray and drizzly; not balmy as here in Key West. Dressed for the most part in slogan T-shirts, shorts, and sunglasses, the rubberneckers formed an almost comical contrast to the dark-uniformed and serious-countenanced city cops on duty displaying the blue and gold patches of the KWPD on their sleeves.
“He really fancies himself, doesn’t he?” Helen said, nodding in the direction of the patrol officer on guard outside the gate. His upper body was muscle-bound to the point of diminished mobility, and he wore a wide brimmed hat cocked jauntily on his head, his black holster polished to the patina of glass. “Is it true the two dead bodies are dressed up as clowns?” she asked.
“Aye,” Rex replied in his Lowland Scots. He had just seen them. Hands bound, plastic bags over their heads, they sat slumped on the floor of the kitchen. “Merle and Taffy Dyer, owners of the bed-and-breakfast. Died of asphyxiation, it would appear.”
“Who did you speak to?”
“Captain Dan Diaz, the ranking detective. Pleasant chap, but not verra forthcoming. As to be expected." Rex conceded the man had a lot on his hands.
“I was talking to someone called Mike, an innkeeper on Francis Street. Handsome devil. He was quite chatty,” Helen added with a pleased smile.
“You mean he tried to chat you up.”
“He told me the owners had been running the Dolphin Inn for six years, after selling their bed-and-breakfast in Vermont. She was an alcoholic, and her husband a controlling miser. Seems the son hated his parents with a vengeance. The daughter is recently divorced and brought her two whiny children to stay while she got back on her feet.”
“This Mike knows a lot.”
“He said the Key West Association of Innkeepers is a very tight-knit community.”
“So it would seem.”
Reporters gathered even as they watched. The double murder of two respectable citizens was big news. A pod of marked and unmarked vehicles nosing the curb offloaded EMS personnel, while two-way radios emitted a steady stream of flat-toned static.
"Seems a bit ghoulish standing here waiting for the body bags," Helen said.
|Publisher:||Perfect Pages Literary Mgmt, Inc.|
|Series:||Rex Graves Mystery Series , #6|
|Sold by:||Barnes & Noble|
|File size:||223 KB|
About the Author
All Rex Graves titles published by Midnight Ink Books, US are available in trade paperback, Nook, Kindle, etc. CHRISTMAS IS MURDER, the first in the series, is also available in LP hardcover (Thorndike Reviewer's Choice) and will be going into its third paperback printing with a new cover. CHRISTMAS IS MURDER reached #1 on the Kindle Bestseller List this past holiday season. The fifth in the series, MURDER OF THE BRIDE, is a Mystery Guild Book Club pick (hardcover).
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I love this series. Not just fluff but veryenjoyable with lots of local details.
PG Key West Mystery ~ Intricately plotted, with a local flavor and a host of colorful characters, this cozy murder mystery makes for a perfect beach or commute read. Rex Graves, bored with his cruise, persuades his fiancée to disembark in Key West and solve a perplexing crime involving the owners of the Dolphin Inn, dressed up as clowns and found dead in their kitchen. He forms a close bond with the lead detective on the case and flies his son Campbell and his girlfriend down from Jacksonville once the murders are solved.