For some odd reason, this book kept making me think of Murder, She Wrote. I just kept expecting Angela Lansbury to pop in and be all like: By Joe, I think I got it! I was really caffeinated when I read this book. It was the butler!! Not really.
So, Jarrett Arlington is the head of the Long Island Arlington Empire (super wealthy people). He invites an investigative journalist named Griffin Neptune Hadley (his parents might have been stoners) to the Winden House estate to investigate the disappearance of Brian Arlington that happened 20 years ago. The kidnapping happened during the family’s Midsummer Nights themed party, and even though they paid a ransom, Brian was never returned. So what happened to Brian? Is he still alive? Bum bum bummm.
Despite having permission from Jarrett, Griff is met with some resistance from the rest of the family (a very eccentric family, I mean seriously eccentric. There’s all kinds of quirky characters in this special batch of crazy). There is a lot of resistance from the family friend and lawyer, Pierce Mather. Pierce immediately has it out for Griff, and doesn’t want him to write the book about the family. Despite this warm welcome, Pierce makes Griff swoon…weak at the knees…twitterpated. Dang Pierce and his good looks and confidence. So, as Griff dives deeper into the mystery that is Brian, he becomes even more drawn to Pierce. I mean of course he does, we are in a m/m romance. But with the mutual attraction between the two of them, there is still distrust. We are in a mystery novel as well. I mean, come on people…
Enter suddenly, Leiland Alvin, a man claiming to be Brian. This has been one crazy week for Griff! Now Pierce and Griff must put aside their differences and join forces to prove that Leiland is a fraud! Will they be able to work together? Can their love survive the suspicious accidents and creepy phone calls? Where’s Brian?! Jessica Fletcher probably knows.
In all honesty, you don’t have to be Jessica Fletcher to figure it all out. The answers are handed to you fairly early, if you pick up on them. But this doesn’t detract from the book. I found it a fun and light read. A nice mix of mystery and romance, with just a few weird parts (thanks for the sex, let me collect some DNA). Although Lanyon is pretty formulaic in his writing, I am a fan, and I’m excited to read some more of his work.
A doll house or maybe a piece of wedding cake.
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