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The Paperwhite Narcissus.

The Paperwhite Narcissus

Cynthia Riggs


ISBN 0312339836 $22.95, 224 pp.

On Martha's Vineyard, ninety two year old Victoria Trumbull is fired from her job at the Island Enquirer where she has been writing the West Tisbury column for over a half a century. Publisher Colley Jameson feels he can get someone to work the section cheaper. Shortly thereafter, he gets a fake obituary notice that he believes Victoria sent to him but she denies it vehemently. Instead the nonagenarian goes to work for the West Tisbury Grackle a one page broadsheet published by William Botts. When Colley's biggest advertiser is killed, a second obituary notice arrives. When one of his ex-wives gets shot, he receives a third obit. Colley hires Victoria to find out who the writer is even though she has increased the circulation of the Grackle forcing Mr. Botts, who wanted to do the paper as a retirement hobby, to hire more staff. When Colley's ex-wife is shot and then killed in the hospital by candy laced with cyanide is killed by candy laced with cyanide another obituary notice arrives. Victoria figures out who the obituary writer is but believes that person is not the killer. The last obituary notice happens when Colley's lawyer is murdered. The crime wave comes to a climax when the two suspects meet with Victoria because they need her help. The protagonist may be ninety-two but she has more energy than people half her age. Poor Mr. Botts didn't have a chance when Victoria changed his broadsheet into a sixteen pager with pictures and a staff of eight. The authorities think that none of the murders are linked but Victoria is determined to prove otherwise and ends up saving Colley's life when someone lures him into a trap. Cynthia Riggs has written a delightful cozy starring a likable protagonist.
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Publication:MBR Bookwatch
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Apr 1, 2005
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