Darty, Peggy

Christy Castlemam

When the Sandpiper Calls by Peggy Darty
When the Sandpiper Calls (2006)
From Publishers Weekly
Christy Castleman, a mystery writer, is diligently finishing up her second novel when a real mystery strikes her small Florida town. First, a bottle with a mysterious and ominous note ("Call the police. Someone is trying to kill me.") washes ashore. Then townspeople notice that Marty McAllister, a local realtor, has been missing appointments, and Dr. Peter Stewart has been murdered in a neighboring town. Are all three circumstances somehow related? As the novel unfolds, readers learn the secrets in characters' backgrounds, including stolen jewels and an adulterous affair. Christy can't resist the chance to put her fictional crime-solving skills to work, but as she digs deeper, she puts herself in real danger. Sub-plots keep the novel moving briskly along: A local war hero, recently back from Iraq, pursues Christy with devotion, but she is still grieving a late beau. A single mother moves to town, and Christy tries to welcome her to the local church where her dad is the pastor. Perhaps most surprising, satisfying and subtle is the emotional complexity between Christy and her mom-their interactions, though loving, are always marked by a bit of tension. This isn't exactly Agatha Christie, but it's still an entertaining, appealing read with a surprising ending.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
When Bobbie Sang the Blues by Peggy Darty
When Bobbie Sang the Blues (2007)
From Publishers Weekly
The second installment of Darty's cozy series (after When the Sandpiper Calls) finds mystery writer and pastor's kid Christy Castleman playing hostess to her kooky, lovable Aunt Bobbie, who's just blown into town for an unexpected visit. Bobbie is being tailed by her estranged husband, Eddie, and his new girlfriend, who are after money Eddie claims Bobbie took from him. When Eddie turns up dead, the cops suspect Bobbie of foul play, and Christy knows she needs to prove her aunt's innocence. But who did kill Eddie? Was it his new sweetie, perhaps aided and abetted by her psychic mama? A racketeer out to collect a gambling debt? Or a local with a long-standing grudge against Eddie? The subplot concerning Christy's relationship with her maybe-beau Dan is less satisfying than the sleuthing. Still, Bobbie is an appealing character, and one hopes she'll make repeat appearances in this lighthearted, entertaining series. (Feb.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

When Zeffie Got a Clue by Peggy Darty
When Zeffie Got a Clue (2008)
It’s an ordinary afternoon in Summer Breeze, Florida, when a young, wide-eyed girl steps into I Saw It First, the trash-to-treasure shop Christy Castleman and her Aunt Bobbie have opened. Clutching a jewelry box, Zeffie Adams tells Christy she needs money to pay her grandmother’s medical bills, prompting Christy to offer this curious visitor more than the jewelry box is worth–or so she thinks.

But complicated questions form when Christy rips out the box’s lining and uncovers a clue to a cold case murder mystery from eight years ago. Despite warnings from her family and handsome boyfriend Dan Brockman, Christy decides to do a little detective work of her own. After all, the infamous murder happened close to her grandmother’s farm. How risky could it be to take the jewelry box back to the Strickland plantation and ask around about it?

Soon Christy finds there is more to the small box than someone wants her to know. A jewelry theft. A mansion murder. Dangerous family secrets buried in history. Can Christy convince others to let go of the past before it’s too late?

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