The Last Laugh – When Comedy Meets Crime

Last Laugh - title crop

Crime is no joke; but with these killer titles, you’ll laugh til you die.

The Killing in the Cafe by Simon Brett

Chalk-and-cheese detective duo Carole and Jude return in the latest wickedly funny Fethering mystery.

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Polly’s Cake Shop has been a town staple for years, but when its owner announces her retirement, the Fethering residents start to worry about rumours that the café might become another high street chain coffee shop, a group clubs together to form the Save Polly’s Cake Shop Action Committee. Roped in to help, Jude finds the committee meetings fraught with petty power struggles, clashing personalities and monstrous egos. Matters take a turn for the worse when she and Carole come across a badly-decomposed body on Fethering beach – and uncover a link to Polly’s. Not only do the two neighbours have to find out whodunit, they are also faced with the thorny question: is it possible to run a business on that most volatile of commodities – goodwill?

“Brett’s customary wit and good humor abound” – Publishers Weekly Starred Review of Mrs Pargeter’s Principles.

Curtains for Miss Plym by Kathleen Delaney

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Mary McGill returns for her second small-town Californian mystery alongside doggy sidekick Millie. 

Preparations for Santa Louisa’s annual spring rummage sale are thrown into chaos when organizer Mary McGill and her devoted cocker spaniel Millie come across a dead body on the premises. Still wearing her pink nightdress and slippers, what on earth was Miss Emilie Plym doing in a locked church hall in the dead of night? And who on earth would want to harm a sweet-natured but confused elderly lady who wouldn’t hurt a fly?

As Mary investigates, she discovers that not everyone had Miss Plym’s best interests at heart, and at least one of those who should have been caring for her is hiding a shocking secret . . .

“Plenty of wit and humor round out this intelligent, appealing mystery. Fans of Laurien Berenson should be introduced to this series” – Booklist


First Fix Your Alibi by Bill James

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When a major drugs dealer seeks vengeance for the death of his family, policemen Harpur and Iles must do all they can to prevent a bloodbath.

Following the murder of his wife and son, tycoon drugs dealer Mansel Shale is determined to get vengeance – and he wants fellow drugs baron, Ralph Ember, to help him. Having heard of the movie Strangers on a Train, in which two men agree to undertake each other’s murders as a way of preventing detection, Shale suggests he and Ralph should have a similar arrangement – and Ralph is in no position to refuse.

When he learns of the plan, Assistant Chief Constable Desmond Iles fears that the hard-won peace he and Harpur have established in the city will be seriously threatened.

“This is another entertaining, laugh-out-loud, mesmerizing, and completely original installment in an excellent series.” – Booklist Starred Review


Tea with Jam and Dread by Tamar Myers

The newest quirky mystery in the hilarious Pennsylvania-Dutch series.

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Deciding that the PennDutch Inn needs to go more upmarket, proprietor Magdalena Yoder is delighted to welcome the Earl and Countess Grimsley-Snodgrass and their family as honoured guests. She’s looking forward to the challenge of introducing English nobility to traditional American culture. But, as Magdalena is about to find out, the Grimsley-Snodgrasses are by no means the easiest of guests, and at the same time she has to contend with the discovery of a mummified corpse trapped in her elevator shaft.

Then tragedy strikes during a traditional Pennsylvania-Dutch picnic at Stucky Ridge, when one of the Grimsley-Snodgrasses disappears over the edge of Lovers’ Leap. Did he fall – or was he pushed? And where is the body…?

“The maven of Mennonite mysteries is at it again.” – Kirkus Reviews on The Death of Pie


Cold Florida by Phillip Depoy

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Introducing former car thief and amateur sleuth Foggy Moskowitz in the first of a new series.

It’s 1974. Foggy Moskowitz, a Jewish car thief on the run from the Brooklyn authorities, ends up in Florida working for the first office of Child Protective Service.

An unlikely but tenacious child protection officer, he takes on an investigation to find a missing infant, taken from the hospital by her addict mother. But the case takes several unexpected turns as Foggy makes his way from seedy Fry’s Bay to Indian Seminole swampland.

Amusing yet moving, mixing passion with pathos, and introducing some memorable characters, Phillip DePoy has created a hugely entertaining new series.

“DePoy’s lively mix of Seminole history and the wry observations of a “Yankee Jew criminal” make for an amusing tale” – Publishers Weekly

this title will remind readers of Sharyn McCrumb’s “Ballad” series and Rick Riordan’s “Tres Navarre” books” – Library Journal Starred Review



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