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Final Sail
A Dead-End Job Mystery #11
Elaine Viets

May 7, 2013 / ISBN 978-0451237705
Mystery/Amateur Sleuth


Reviewed by Laura Hinds

Helen Hawthorne and Phil Sagemont are newlyweds. They live in Florida, and work together as the PI team of Coronado Investigations. They are hired to find evidence that Blossom Zerling poisoned her husband, Arthur Zerling, in order to inherit his wealth.

Blossom and Arthur were also newlyweds and it's Arthur's daughter, Violet who is convinced of Blossom's evil treachery. Helen assumes the role of a minister in order to keep watch over Arthur as he lay dying in his hospital bed. Phil, meanwhile, is hired to work for Blossom as Estate Manager. Both cover stories provide the perfect set up for the PI's to flush out the truth about what Blossom is up to.

After Arthur's death, Helen stays involved long enough to preside over his funeral and then she is free to embark on another case. The other case involves a private yacht and the smuggling of emeralds. Working as a ship stewardess is exhausting and sea-sickening for Helen, but when she hears the name Blossom mentioned on the yacht her antennae go on full alert. Could it be the same Blossom and is she the culprit in both cases?

I've been reading this series since the beginning and absolutely love how the author develops the characters and their relationships so fully. The Florida setting provides lots of options for the PI's to work, and their home at the Coronado Tropic Apartments brings their colorful neighbors into the story.

Final Sail has two separate, yet intertwining mysteries, both carefully plotted and craftily written. This allows for both Helen and Phil to have their particular investigative techniques showcased. It is a fast and fun read that offers plenty of laughs along the way.

If Elaine Viets can keep up the evolution of the characters and come up with more madcap mystery adventures, this series could go on and on. I, for one, sure hope it does!

Other Reviews in this series

Just Murdered, No 4   [review]
Murder Unleashed,
No. 5   [review]
Murder with Reservations,
No. 6   [review]
Clubbed to Death,
No 7   [review]
Pumped for Murder,
No 10   [review 1] [review 2]
Final Sail, No 11 [review]

Reviewed 2012