Francis, Dorothy Brenner



Francis, Dorothy Brenner - Florida Authors
Conch Shell Murder (2003)
From Booklist
Francis, known for her mysteries for young adults, has written her first for adults. The story introduces Katie Haswoth, a recently licensed private detective in Key West. As a newcomer to the community, she faces a complicated case involving a prominent family. Alexa Chitting, owner of a prosperous marina, lies dead in her office. Someone killed her before she had a chance to sign a new will leaving her fortune to the Key West Preservation Society instead of her family and friends. The list of suspects includes her husband, lover, daughter, son-in-law, and secretary. The mayor and the housing-development director may be involved, too. Sorting out family entanglements and political corruption will give Katie a chance to establish herself as a detective if she can survive to solve the crime. Most Key West mysteries lean toward the hard-boiled, but this one gives cozy fans a chance to enjoy Margaritaville, too. Barbara Bibel
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
Francis, Dorothy Brenner - Florida Authors Pier Pressure: A Keely Moreno Mystery (2005)
From Booklist
Keely Moreno is working hard to build her practice as a foot reflexologist in Key West. She has fled an abusive husband and started a new life, but trouble is not far away. Arriving for a house call at Margaux Ashford's home, she finds her client dead. Finding her name at the top of the suspect list, she must clear her name and save her reputation. Fortunately, plenty of other suspects have motives: a local writer; Margaux's ex-husband and his new wife; a retired police officer who may have been Margaux's lover; and Keely's ex-husband, Jude Cardell, who would love to see her convicted of murder. The sunny, colorful Key West setting offers striking contrast to the dark doings in the plot. Keely is a strong woman making her own way in the world while establishing a budding romance with friend and sleuthing assistant Punt. Francis effectively combines elements of the cozy traditional with just a bit of South Florida edge, much as John Leslie does in his Gideon Lowry series. Barbara Bibel
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
Francis, Dorothy Brenner - Florida Authors Cold-case Killer: A Keely Moreno Mystery (2007)
From Booklist
Keely Moreno, a Florida foot reflexologist who solves crimes in her spare time, surely must be one of the more unusual amateur sleuths in the genre. Although she's vowed to give up crime solving, Keely just can't say no to a woman who wants her help in finding out who committed the murder that put her son behind bars. The investigation once again puts Keely square in danger's crosshairs, but our heroine is a little too resourceful to get herself in any real trouble. This third in the series is written with a light touch and plenty of offbeat appeal. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association.
Eden Palms Murder (Five Star Mystery Series) by Dorothy Brenner Francis Eden Palms Murder (2008)
From Booklist
Veteran youth author Francis’ fourth fast-paced mystery-thriller for adults once again takes place in Key West. Past efforts have featured a rookie private detective and a foot reflexologist, and now we have singer-songwriter Bailey Green. Each of these spunky and complex heroines is in the process of remaking her life. Just as Bailey arrives at the Key West airport, the body of her benefactor, Francine Shipton, is found lying at the foot of a stairway in her Eden Palms mansion. As usual, Francis has assembled an interesting and eclectic mix of suspects, including a doctor operating a private clinic, a funeral director, a real-estate salesman, the victim’s son, and Bailey’s brother. The motive seems to be pretty clear, however, as Francine had plans to donate her mansion as a safe house for the homeless. When a homeless man also goes missing, Bailey tries to get police help and nearly ends up a victim herself. This is an enjoyable page-turner with quite appealing and realistic characters and a well-delivered social message. Any of Francis’ three sleuths would be welcomed back in future novels. --Judy Coon




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