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Lilies That Fester
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About the Author

With the Bretta Solomon series, which includes "Roots of Murder and Murder Sets Seed," Janis Harrison has combined her career as a florist with her love of writing. She and her husband live near Windsor, Missouri, where they operate their own greenhouse business.

Reviews

The third mystery to feature Missouri florist Bretta Solomon, widow of Deputy Sheriff Carl Solomon, proves a less fruitful offering than its predecessors (Roots of Murder and Murder Sets Seed). Bretta travels to nearby Branson, a small Ozarks town, to attend the first Show-Me Floral Designers' Competition and Conference. After checking in at her hotel, she finds a letter from some friends of Carl's, Vincent and Mabel McDuffy, stuck under her door, asking her to "right a terrible wrong." She tries to contact the McDuffys, but the couple has disappeared and a newspaper article leads her to think they may be murder victims. Add to this mystery spiteful attacks on competition contestants, and the situation is ripe for Bretta to jump in and investigate. What does the attractive man with the butterfly group have to do with all this? And why does he, a guest at the hotel, answer the phone at a local business? Though the plot is basically sound, Bretta lurches willy-nilly from episode to episode without continuity or logic, occasionally guided by the voice of her late husband, who still speaks to her in moments of stress. There's a large cast of secondary characters, stereotypical and tiresome, about whom it's difficult to get concerned. Harrison brings off a surprise ending with ?lan, but the story has already gone to seed. (Nov. 12) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Coordinator of a floral design contest at the statewide florist conference in Branson, MO, newly svelte Bretta Solomon (Murder Sets Seed) tackles several heavyweight personalities on her way to success. Numerous envious competitors want to discredit her, an attractive but mysterious man shows suspicious interest in her, and a couple who wanted their daughter's death investigated winds up dead. True to form, Bretta carefully sleuths her way to the truth but not without personal peril involving knives, razors, and heights. A special delight for series fans, this entry features a sympathetic heroine, comfortable prose, and an intriguing plot. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

"This third Solomon mystery further establishes Harrison's budding character as an amateur sleuth with a fertile imagination, whose blossoming love of mystery and intrigue promises to weed out all types of trouble."--"Booklist"
"Harrison displays a talent for capturing the workings of a small community."--"January Magazine"
"Quick pacing, engaging characters, and a touch of romance."--"Publishers Weekly"

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