Title: Murder Me Now
Publisher: Mysterious Press
Publication Date: 2001
Binding: Hard Cover
Book Condition: Fine
Dust Jacket Condition: Fine in Plastic DJ Cover
Signed: Signed & Dated on Title Page
Edition: First Edition, First Printing
Signed & Dated March 3, 2001 on the title page. Bookseller Inventory # 002804
Synopsis: Greenwich Village is decked with snow and mistletoe in December of 1920. Olivia Brown is once again drawn into intrigue when a nanny, employed by one of her friends, is found murdered. Olivias investigation reveals not only some dark family secrets, but a criminal organization called the Black Hand. Did the young woman die at the hands of thugs, or one of Olivias friends?
Review: Olivia Brown (Oliver to her friends)--bohemian poet, advocate of women's rights and free love, and connoisseur of bootleg gin--has the unpleasant habit of stumbling across dead bodies. When she finds Fordy and Kate Vaudes' demure nanny, Adelle, hanging from a tree during a country house weekend, Olivia is sure suicide is the wrong assumption. After all, why would Adelle hang herself with a man's leather belt?
Back in Greenwich Village, Oliver and her housemate, private detective Harry Melville, plunge into an investigation that takes them from Oliver's gently gin- soaked literary world to an array of nefarious dens of iniquity. Adelle, it turns out, was Adeline Zimmerman, former Pinkerton detective; Daisy, one of the guests at that country weekend, was Adeline's sister; and both Zimmerman women were having an affair with Lester Nolan, the corrupt cop ("a wax model of a hero in human clothing") who's doing the commissioner a favor by looking into the murder. What (or whom) was Adeline investigating? What has caused the sudden tension between Fordy and Kate? And who, really, is Celia, the beautiful photographer who drifts in and out of Oliver's life like a bewitching muse?
As Olivia tries to trace a path through Village society (where everyone knows everyone else, and serial alliances and misalliances are so common that "It was like putting a light to a single match in a row of matches and watching one catch fire, then another, and another until the whole parcel was ablaze"), she finds herself rubbing elbows with an assortment of picturesque characters, from mobsters to authors. One of these charming individuals is a deadly threat--but which?
The novel is refreshingly free of glaring anachronisms, and author Annette Meyers has obviously done her research on Village literary life in the '20s. But Meyers is no Fitzgerald, nor even a Michael Cunningham. Though the novel preens itself a trifle ostentatiously on its periodicity, tending toward heavy-handed references to the Great War, it fails to capture the poignantly fragile glamour of the era, with its heady whirlwind of flappers, expatriate authors, and jazz and its haunting legacy of trench warfare, poison gas, and dislocated modernity. As long as it doesn't try too hard, however, the Olivia Brown series is a perfectly pleasant diversion, as amusing as--and less rigorous than--the Charleston. --Kelly Flynn
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Store Description: Murder on the Beach Bookstore is both an internet and brick & morter store, specializing in signed Florida mysteries. We also carry a full line of mystery, horror, espionage, and true crime ( new, used, and antiquarian). We carry mystery gifts, and perform murder mystery entertainment at your party or fund-raiser.