Rally ‘Round the Corpse by Hy Conrad

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     “Abel Adventures” is a brand new mystery series, penned by Hy Conrad, writer and producer of the landmark TV show “Monk.”

     In the series debut, “Rally ‘Round the Corpse,” we meet Amy Abel, two years after the death of her fiancé.  Amy needs a fresh start.  And what better way for a shy, risk-averse woman to start over than to sink her savings into a travel agency specializing in adventure.  Her first project?  A mystery road rally through the European countryside.

     At the starting line in Monte Carlo, Amy finds herself attracted to Marcus Alvarez, the most mysterious of her two dozen game-loving clients.  But the rally gets off to a rocky start when an eccentric writer, the only person who knows the game’s solution, is himself murdered back in New York.

     Weird accidents begin happening along the route and Amy discovers that this fictional mystery was based on a real, unsolved case, one that Marcus knows too much about.  Now she has no choice but to join forces with Fanny, her domineering mother, before the killer strikes again.

     I liked the idea behind this book.  Amy is a young woman trying to make her travel adventure business a success after the death of her fiance.  She books a European road rally murder mystery and hires a professional to plan the game.  Everything goes well until he ends up murdered.

     The book is divided into two parts.  The first follows Amy and her clients on their European murder mystery.  It’s a delightful setting and I had fun trying to figure out the murder mystery along with all the characters.

     The second part of the book takes place back in the United States where Amy, Marcus, and other guests try and figure out who murdered their fellow guest.  I had some difficulty transitioning from the fake murder to the real murder but once I got back into the story I was able to follow along.

     While they are trying to solve the murder Amy and Marcus become closer.  There is romance and tension in the book along with the murder.  In the end they do end up solving all 3 murders that occur in the book.

      I did have some trouble believing who the murderer ended up being.  Without giving it away, I thought that it was far fetched which was disappointing after a decent plot, cast of characters, and story line.

I give this book 3 out of 5 stars.

About Hy Conrad:

     Best known for his work in mysteries, Hy was one of the original writers for the groundbreaking series, Monk.  He worked on the show for all eight seasons, the final two as Co-Executive Producer, and received three Edgar Nominations from the Mystery Writers of America for “Best TV Episode.”

     In a related project, Hy was Executive Producer and head writer of Little Monk, a series of short films featuring Adrian Monk as a ten-year-old.  His latest TV work was as writer and Consulting Producer for White Collar.

     Hy is also the author of hundreds of short stories and ten books of short whodunits, which have been sold around the world in fourteen languages.  Hy’s first full-length comedy/mystery play, Home Exchange, premiered at the Waterfront Playhouse in Key West in May 2012.  And, in a different vein, he recently authored a humor book called Things Your Dog Doesn’t Want You to Know.
Hy splits his time among Key West, Vermont and New York City.

Author Website: http://www.hyconrad.com/

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