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The Case of the Murdered Muckraker
Daisy Dalrymple Mystery, No 10

by Carola Dunn

      Mrs. Daisy Fletcher is staying at the Chelsea Hotel in New York while her new husband Alex advises J. Edgar Hoover in Washington. She has plenty to do, typing up stories for Abroad magazine and meeting some of the hotel’s colorful Bohemian inhabitants. But after overhearing a row in her neighbor’s suite, she is shocked to witness the same man being shot and tumbling down an elevator shaft. The deceased was Otis Carmody, an unpopular muckraking journalist who had many people wanting him dead. Aided by an inept FBI agent and the elderly Cabot sisters, Daisy has to find out whodunit.

After seven novels set in England and one on an ocean liner, Daisy is at last in the author’s native country. Ms Dunn endeavors to paint a picture of Prohibition New York, with a sassy elevator boy, wisecracking cops, dodgy politics and “Irish tea.” It would have been nice to have taken in a speakeasy or two, delved deeper into fascinating Tammany Hall business and in general got out a bit more while in New York, but after a slow start the story picks up pace, and ends up exciting. For such a lively series that has been consistently enjoyable this is the weakest entry so far, with several chapters devoted to endless conversations between Daisy and various other characters. Doubtless the author found the scenes with the aforementioned wisecracking copes hilarious and fascinating, but I failed to and detected a hobbyhorse being ridden. As soon as the story leaves New York it gathers momentum, and a thrilling aerial chase over the Rockies had me putting down the book wanting more, and feeling that the tale had redeemed itself somewhat.

Reviews of other titles in this series

Death at Wentwater Court, 1
The Winter Garden Mystery, 2
Requiem For A Mezzo, 3
Murder on the Flying Scotsman, 4
Damsel in Distress, 5
Dead In The Water, 6
Styx and Stones, 7
Rattle His Bones, 8 [review 1] [review 2]
To Davy Jones Below, 9
The Case of the Murdered Muckraker, 10
Mistletoe and Murder, 11
Die Laughing, 12
A Mourning Wedding, 13
Fall of a Philanderer, 14
Gunpowder Plot, 15
The Black Ship, 17
Sheer Folly, 18
Anthem For Doomed Youth, 19
Gone West, 20

The Book

Kensington Mystery
November 2003
Historical Crime - 1923 New York
More at US || UK

The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2007
© 2006