I was pleasantly surprised that this book was also humorous. Characters were great, even the minor ones. Mystery was also nicely worked out at the end without plot holes. Overall all very entertaining read and I look forward Mathes' other works.
From Publishers Weekly: "Fans of Mathes's three previous stand-alone "girl" mysteries (The Girl at the End of the Line, etc.) will relish his latest glittering offering set in the cut-throat New York art world. Eight years after her painter father, Aaron Sailor, went into a coma after falling downstairs in their Soho loft, theater choreographer Jane Sailor receives word that Aaron has unexpectedly begun to talk and has asked to see her. Reluctantly, she makes the trip from her home in Cincinnati to the Long Island hospital caring for the patient. There her father mutters that his fall was no accident. Determined to learn the truth, Jane takes a job in Manhattan with wealthy eccentric Perry Mannerback, rare clock collector and owner of the only painting Aaron ever sold, a canvas of a naked woman sitting on the same staircase where the artist fell. Between her legs is a hideous ceramic clock with no hands. When Aaron dies under suspicious circumstances after Perry pays for his transfer to a Manhattan hospital, Jane is convinced that the clock in the painting holds the key to his death. After flying to London to trace the clock's origins, she finds that stage combat isn't necessarily the best training for the real thing. The author's art expertise (he's the director of a New York gallery) helps propel the breezy, improbable plot. Witty dialogue and an engaging male romantic interest whom Jane meets on the plane to London add to the fun." Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
Charles Mathes is a unique author. His mysteries, which are not series books, nevertheless carry a common theme, that of a woman who has no real past, who doesn't know her family or ancestors. But, through some curious turn of events, she has to dig and search and discover who she is and what the family secrets are. The books are wonderful, different, and even charming, though not consciously so. When I accidentally happened onto one of them, I had to have the others immediately. No one else writes anything quite like these stories. Get them and read them!
The Fine Art of Murder When her artist father emerges from an eight-year coma, Jane Sailor, a theatrical choreographer, discovers that his tragic fall down the stairs of their Soho loft was no accident. Though only semiconscious, Aaron Sailor's words are baffling: "No, Perry, no." But who is Perry? Could he be Peregrine Mannerback, an eccentric rare-clock collector and owner of Aaron's painting of a woman with a clock sitting on the same staircase where the artist fell? But when Adam Sailor dies suddenly and suspiciously, Jane becomes convinced the clock in the painting is the key to his murder. Embarking on a colorful odyssey into the international art world that spans New York, Seattle, and London, Jane attempts to unearth her family's secrets. She hopes she lives long enough to share them.