A Madeline Bean NovelBook - 2004
Number one Los Angeles Times bestselling author, multiple-award nominee and winner, and peerless purveyor of the most scrumptiously delicious mysteries ever to please a discriminating palate, the incomparable Jerrilyn Farmer returns with another Mad Bean event -- where murder, mayhem, and madcap doings simmer together in a tempting ragout.
The dazzling Jazz Ball for the prestigious Woodburn School of Music promises to be event planner Madeline Bean's greatest triumph to date -- both professionally and personally. All the rich and mighty of L.A. society's fund-raising crowd seem to be seriously enjoying the festivities, not to mention the black-and-white-themed menu Mad and company have whipped up in their kitchen. And there may even be a replacement here for her ex-beau LAPD Detective Chuck Honnett -- who turned out to be not as completely divorced as he'd implied -- although charming trust-fund hunk Dexter Delano Wyatt's past may be a bit too shady for Ms. Bean's good.
Of course, then everything goes straight to hell. Having to contend with a heap of celebrity trash, a ranting vocal coach, his rabid bitch of a girlfriend, and dueling preteen music prodigies is bad enough. But when the furious bidding war for the prize item to be auctioned off--a one-of-a-kind, sterling silver Selmer Mark VI tenor saxophone -- almost results in bloodshed, and the perfect sax subsequently vanishes, Madeline can't help but wonder what else could possibly go wrong.
Well ... she could arrive home to discover a dead body in her bedroom. Detective Honnett could start making insistent "take me back" noises. The man Mad is considering as a candidate to fill the void in her sex life could have been involved in a multimillion-dollar art theft and insurance fraud and maybe much worse. And then there's the red-haired stranger who seems to be stalking her.
All in all, the lethal looniness surrounding the theft of a priceless instrument is threatening to drive Mad quite mad. With the jazz cool, the sax "hot," and the martinis smoking, it may drive her quite dead.