Thirteen Diamonds

by Alan Cook

Review by Robyn Glazer

Struck down in the middle of one of the best hands of bridge ever dealt,
Gerald Weiss dies eating concealed shellfish. Since Gerald was holding thirteen
diamonds at the time of his demise, everyone just assumed he died of shock.
After all in a retirement home a shock isn't the best thing to have. After the
autopsy, it becomes apparent that his shellfish allergy has caught up with him
and won. Everyone chalks it up as an accident. Everyone except Lillian Morgan,
that is.

Lillian Morgan was a mathematician professor and knows the odds of getting
thirteen diamonds are extremely high. She smells something fishy and it is not
Gerald's breath! Her investigation begins with help from her best friend Tess,
who also resides at the retirement home. She also manages to talk her
granddaughter into doing some scut work. After flying to San Diego, checking
out Gerald's will and just generally interrogating everyone who knew Gerald,
Lillian is still having trouble figuring out who could have wanted to murder
him and why. Thank goodness she has a little help and a lot of smarts. Those
smarts just might keep her from getting killed.

I really enjoyed this book because the protagonist is different from any
other. Lillian Morgan is unpredictable which is interesting to watch. She acts
like a young kid in an old person's body. This book is actually really short
and moves very fast. The writing is energetic and very funny, which is also
a good way to describe Lillian. The relationships are well explained and very
realistic. I loved her granddaughter and her granddaughter's boyfriend. This
is a very successful start to what is hopefully a new series. I will keep my
eye out for more books by Alan Cook. There is no real violence and fits
appropriately into the cozy genre.

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