Diane Weiner,
Murder is Chartered
(Cozy Cat, 2017)

Susan, a former teacher turned retiree, volunteers at Westbrook Charter School. Late one evening, after working the inaugural open house at the school, she drives home so exhausted that she can barely keep her eyes open. Out of nowhere something slams into the hood of her car; she exits her car and discovers a body. Scared out of her mind, she calls her daughter Lynette, who happens to be a private investigator.

The body turns out to be Melissa Chadwick, the assistant principal at the school where Susan volunteers. Lynette urges her mom to keep quiet and cooperate with the test she's asked to take for alcohol or illegal substances. Cleared by the test, she goes home -- but she can't help but wonder how she didn't see Melissa before hitting her.

Then Lynette calls to say Melissa was dead before she was hit by Susan's car. Lynette says Melissa has had enemies ever since her husband, Matthew Chadwick, opened the charter school and hired his wife for the job; he was accused of nepotism by those who felt she wasn't qualified for the position.

Naturally because of her involvement in Melissa's misfortune, Susan's curiosity leads her to stumble upon some dark secrets, possible suspects and terrible things going on in the underbelly of her town.

To elaborate further on this very interesting mystery novel would give away too many interesting nuggets and ruin the elements of surprise. This story is definitely entertaining. The novel is well written, and I liked that it wasn't too heavy.

I am looking forward to Diane Weiner's future endeavors.

book review by
Renee Harmon

8 July 2017

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