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A Trouble of Fools


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Linda Barnes's A TROUBLE OF FOOLS is the book that introduced readers to ex-Boston cop and PI Carlotta Carlyle, who knows trouble when she sees it...


Moving from the popular Michael Spraggue series, Barnes has created Carlotta Carlyle, ex-cabbie, ex-policewoman, now private investigator. While looking for a missing cab driver, Carlyle stumbles upon some strange goings on at the taxi company. From the trashing of her client's house to a strange scam involving large sums of money, Carlyle moves through Boston until the threatening violence explodes when least expected. Barnes uses all of her finely honed technique to deliver an exciting book. JV

"Carlotta [is] pure gold."?"Publishers Weekly""Beautifully plotted, exciting, moving, and leavened with wit."--Robert B. Parker"""Carlotta Carlyle is one of the most refreshing private eyes to come along. [She] is the spunky sort of gal you'd like to have for a sister or best friend. She's loyal, warm, persistent, intelligent, savvy--all the right stuff...[a] challenging and inventive plot."--"Indianapolis"" News""Carlotta bristles with vitality and a slightly sardonic view of herself and the world. She's smart but not smart-alecky; the plot is bizarre but never beyond reason. Engaging and engrossing all the way."--"Kirkus Reviews""""You will be caught up in Carlotta's adventures. For she is one of the most sparkling, most irresistible heroines ever to grace the pages of a whodunit it's top-drawer all the way."--"Chicago"" Sun-Times""""Even in the detective-glutted Boston area, it's hard to miss Carlotta Carlyle this is an author who's nobody's fool when it comes to writing a slick lively story that's all in good fun."--"St. Petersburg"" Times""

Boston-based private eye Carlotta Carlyle is the newest creation of the author of the lively Michael Sprague mysteries. In addition to being red-haired, 61 tall, a former cabbie and an ex-cop, Carlotta is the sort of storyteller capable of enlisting readers' sympathies at the very outset. Her first adventure involves a missing person. An elderly Irish woman hires her to find her brother, Eugene, who has vanished from their home, leaving behind a mysterious cache of $13,000. Eugene's cronies, who, like himself, are drivers for a taxi fleet and secret sympathizers with the Irish cause, seem to be involved with a scheme in support of the IRA. Having once worked for the cab company herself, Carlotta hires on again to monitor their activities, an action that eventually sets her at odds with a major drug ring, the FBI and a certain Mafia-connected former lover. All of the above learn that it's not wise to step on the toes of someone who wears size 11 shoes. Carlotta first made a brief appearance in a prize-winning short story called ``Lucky Penny''; in this longer form, she's pure gold. (November)

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