Chris Forman. Killer Surf. Lexington, KY: CreateSpace, 2011.

Ian Porthos Wallace is a simple man. He enjoys wearing the kilts of his Scottish ancestry, working as a food writer and photographer, and making his lovely fiancée, Athena Spyros, happy. What Ian doesn’t enjoy is murder, but it falls into his path anyway. Literally. He trips over Brenda Dexter’s body while walking on Wrightsville Beach, a stone’s throw from his home on the North Carolina coast. Ian used to know Brenda as the neighbor lady who locked herself out of the house every so often, but now he’ll be forced to remember her as a dead body.

Murder isn’t the only thing on Ian’s plate. He’s also planning a wedding with (or perhaps in spite of) his intended’s mother, Maria. Since Athena’s last marriage was an absolute disaster, Maria is determined that everything will be perfect for her baby this time around. When Ian gets the bright idea of holding the wedding in Scotland in his family’s ancestral town, Maria is dead set against it. But even with unrest on the home front and a wedding looming in the near future, Ian can’t stop thinking about Brenda Dexter’s murder, which remains a mystery. So he does a little sleuthing of his own, starting with his eccentric neighbors.

First, he talks to Ruby, who lived in the other side of Brenda’s duplex. Ruby is a great gal; she’s a stripper past her prime and her fashion sense favors animal print and pink fluff. But she doesn’t know anything. Next, he gets to know April and May, two eighty-year-old sisters with a passion for the home shopping network, who are similarly clueless about Brenda’s death. Other neighbors and various local characters come and go, but no one knows anything. Then, another murder occurs and someone steps forward with an unexpected confession.

Check this title’s availability in the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.

Catch up on Ian’s adventures in the first Port City Mystery, Killer Cuisine, coming soon to the North Carolina Collection in Wilson Library.

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