In her eighth doggedly endearing adventure in sleuthing, Melanie Travis is anticipating her brother Frank's impending nuptials to beautiful dog-handler Bertie Kennedy while reflecting over the defection of her fianc?, Sam, who (in last year's Unleashed) suddenly announced he wasn't ready for marriage and went off to find himself. Bertie has hired an old friend, Sara Bentley, to plan her wedding, despite Sara's dubious reputation as a poor little rich girl who flits from one job to another. When Sara disappears soon after taking on the job, Bertie insists that Melanie help find her. As if Melanie doesn't have enough headaches, her ex-husband, Bob Travis, has suddenly reappeared, without his young wife, and is acting like he wants Melanie back. As Melanie delves into Sara's background, she realizes that most of Sara's friends and family aren't that concerned about her. Then a dead body turns up in a fire in the guest cottage where Sara lived on her mother's estate. Is it Sara? If not, then who is it, and where is Sara? The plot takes some surprising twists as Melanie digs deeper into Sara's life, trying to unearth the truth. Balancing an entertaining mystery puzzle with Melanie's attempt to resolve her feelings for her ex-husband and her decamped fianc?, Berenson rounds out the story with the lore of the dog-show world her readers expect. (Sept. 4) FYI: With this title, the publisher has initiated a brighter, bolder jacket design for the series that can only help sales. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Series sleuth Melanie Travis (Unleashed), a teacher and dog handler, goes in search of the sometime wedding consultant she recommended to her brother and his fianc e. The consultant apparently vanishes in the midst of preparations, but when her cottage burns down, a woman's body is found. For all collections. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
The dust jacket says it all: a pair of dogs driving off in a car with a Just Married placard. Although the impending nuptials technically involve humans-Connecticut private-school tutor Melanie Travis's brother Frank and his fiancee Alberta Kennedy-Melanie has much less to say about them than about her fearsome Aunt Peg, Bertie's wedding planner Sara Bentley, or just about anybody else who has to do with showing dogs. But self-absorbed, irresponsible Sara, doing her best to provide dramatic competition for Melanie's favorite species, disappears just when the wedding plans should be going into overdrive, and Melanie, enlisted as her aide in order to help her get over the departure of her lover Sam Driver (Unleashed, 2000), soon finds that Sara's lack of experience as a wedding planner is balanced by lots of other experience she's had, most of it unpleasant. When Sara's New Canaan cottage burns down with a body inside, Melanie assumes the dead woman is Sara-until she finds out that Sara's ordered flowers since her disappearance and phoned Bertie since the fire. What gives? Though Bertie offers to keep Melanie's unwelcome ex-husband Bob-back in town bereft of his voting-age second wife-off Melanie's back if she joins the investigation, veterans of Berenson's first seven adventures won't expect miracles of detection. Though Melanie neither identifies the forgettable killer nor even figures out why Aunt Peg is acting so suspiciously nice, her Standard Poodle, Faith, takes Winners Bitch, Best of Breed, and Best of Opposite Sex.