Board Stiff (A Dead-End Job Mystery) by Elaine Viets
(NAL Hardcover, 2013, 288 pages)
Board Stiff is the twelfth novel in the Dead-End Job Mystery series by Elaine Viets. In this novel, the husband and wife PI team of Helen and Phil are hired by Sunny Jim’s Paddleboards to investigate who is trying to ruin Jim’s paddleboard business. In the process of the investigation, one of Sunny Jim’s customers is murdered on one of Sunny Jim’s paddleboards. Helen and Phil recruit their landlady, Margery Flax, and television news reporter, Valerie Cannata, to help them solve the mystery.
In the last few Dead-End Job Mystery novels, there has been a subplot involving Helen’s ex-husband and Helen’s nephew. Helen’s nephew accidentally hits Helen’s ex-husband too hard with a bat. The ex-husband appears to be okay, but later takes a turn for the worse and dies. Only Helen and her sister are aware of this turn of events. They decide to bury the ex-husband in the basement of a church that is being built. The basement is scheduled to have concrete poured the next day. This solution should end the trouble with Helen’s ex-husband. However, someone has seen what Helen and her sister did and is blackmailing them. But who is doing the blackmailing?
There is a new Dead-End Job Mystery every year. I look forward to reading them. Not only are the plots good, but I like the characters. If you’re looking for an established mystery series that has a little humor, you might want to give this one a try.