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Book details
  • Genre:FICTION
  • SubGenre:Mystery & Detective / Women Sleuths
  • Language:English
  • Series title:The Leslie Elliott mysteries
  • Series Number:4
  • Pages:256
  • eBook ISBN:9781732489448
  • Paperback ISBN:9781732489431

Deadly Winds

by Susan Hanafee View author's profile page

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Overview
Amateur sleuth Leslie Elliott and her reporter friend, Wes Avery, return to their Florida island after vacationing in Key West to discover that a wealthy widow named Alice Gerkin has been killed by a falling church bell. Although the sheriff claims it was an accident, Leslie believes the woman's demise is linked to her outspoken criticism of the church's planned renovation. Leslie reaches out to a local handyman who worked for Alice. After investigating the belfry, he confirms Leslie's suspicions that it was more than deadly winds that caused the 300-pound bell to drop. He suggests that a dishonest construction worker named Troy Graham could be involved. When Graham's body turns up in a dumpster and the church's architect is found dead with a two by four nailed to her head, Leslie is convinced that one or more of the major figures in the church renovation are involved in their deaths. Her suspicions also include the pastor, who has told Leslie that Alice's death was "God's will." As the mysteries unfold and she confronts the church bell killer, Leslie finds herself locked in a room from which there is no escape and in the path of another deadly storm racing toward the island. Mystery and intrigue combine with a healthy dose of humor to keep the plot lively and entertaining in this latest novel featuring Leslie Elliott and her colorful island friends.
Description
During a freak winter storm in Florida, a 300-pound bell plummets to the ground killing a member of the congregation who has vocally opposed an expensive church renovation project. Was it an accident or murder? Amateur sleuth and would-be novelist Leslie Elliott and her reporter friend, Wes Avery, return to their Florida island after vacationing in Key West to discover that a wealthy widow named Alice Gerkin has been obliterated in the church belfry. The sheriff is adamant that Alice's death was accidental. Leslie believes the woman's demise is linked to her outspoken criticism of the church's proposed remodeling. Leslie reaches out to a local handyman named Jake Fargo, who worked for Alice. After investigating the belfry, he confirms Leslie's suspicions that it was more than deadly winds that caused the bell to drop. He suggests that a dishonest construction worker he knows could be involved. When the construction worker's body turns up in a dumpster and the church's architect is found dead with a two-by-four nailed to her head, Leslie is convinced that one or more of the major figures involved in the renovation have something to do with the three deaths. Her suspicions also include the pastor who has told her that Alice's death was "God's will." Meanwhile, Leslie learns that Val Gammon, the adult son of her mother's fiancé, will be moving in with Leslie's mother temporarily. Leslie quickly recognizes that Val's affinity for mind-altering drugs and his connection to a dangerous Panamanian shaman could be a threat to her family's safety. Leslie plans a road trip to Tampa to unearth details about the church pastor's shadowy past and convinces Wes to fly to Panama to learn more about Val's connection to fatal activities that have taken place in the shaman's Temple of the Spirit. As the mysteries unfold and she confronts the church bell killer, Leslie finds herself locked in a room from which there is no escape and in the path of another deadly storm racing toward the island. Mystery and intrigue, combined with a healthy dose of humor, keep the plot lively and entertaining in this latest novel featuring Leslie Elliott and her colorful Florida friends.
About the author
Susan Hanafee is an award-winning former journalist whose career as a reporter for The Indianapolis Star spanned three decades. She formerly headed corporate communications for IPALCO Enterprises and Cummins Inc. She resides in southwest Florida. Hanafee's blogs can be found on www.susanhanafee.com. Her previously published books include Red, Black and Global: The Transformation of Cummins (a corporate history); Rachael's Island Adventures (a collection of children's stories); Never Name an Iguana and Rutabagas for Ten (essays and observations on life); Leslie's Voice, a novel, in which her heroine Leslie Elliott is introduced, and the sequels, Scavenger Tides, The End of His Journey and Deadly Winds.
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