Genealogy of Murder: A Deb Ralston Mystery

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9780312139759: Genealogy of Murder: A Deb Ralston Mystery

Fort Worth Detective Deb Ralston is called in when an extra corpse turns up among the other cadavers in a medical experiment, in a case that becomes complicated by a missing local genealogist who has any number of ex-wives and ex-fiance+a7es with reason to kill him.

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From Publishers Weekly:

Family trees are gnarled and twisted, and many of the roots are hidden in the 12th outing (after Bird in a Cage) for Deb Ralston, a middle-aged Mormon police investigator in Fort Worth, Tex. Deb's son- in-law, a medical intern studying how human corpses decompose, finds he has an extra, unaccounted-for cadaver on his hands. Although the cause of death is determined to be a heart attack, there are still the questions of who the portly older man was and why someone has hidden his body. Nicknaming the corpse Uncle George, Deb quickly makes a connection between George and a missing genealogist. When their fingerprints don't match, she's perplexed. Then she learns that a San Francisco mortuary is missing a corpse that was shipped to Texas. What does any of this have to do with the Daughters of the American Flag, a genealogy-obsessed DAR-like group to which two of Deb's aunts belong? The question becomes more urgent when a friend of hers is kidnapped. Personable Deb uses her wits, and the help (sometimes grudgingly given) of her far-flung family to catch a truly scary villain in a clever, intricately wrought puzzle.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews:

Hours after finding a freshly embalmed John Doe smuggled in among the other participants in an experiment on cadaveric decomposition, Fort Worth Det. Deb Ralston (Bird in a Cage, 1995, etc.) hears her friend Matilda Greenwood complain that Marvin Tutwiler, the genealogist who hired her to help him write his latest book, has disappeared. But there's no evidence that John Doe ever lived in Tutwiler's apartment. Before Deb can establish just who John Doe is, though, Tutwiler's place is burgled; so is his fianc‚e's; so is Matilda's. Then the fianc‚e is killed and Matilda kidnapped, obviously by somebody who's really interested in all that genealogical research. So far, so good; but Martin's 12th novel supplies only the pettiest motive for the villain's enterprising crime spree. Below average for the series. -- Copyright ©1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Lee Martin
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