Buckingham Pet Palace is a daycare and spa for pets, run by
the enterprising Sue Patrick, whom we met in the
earlier Stay Calm
And Collie On. Sue has a partner in the
firm, Lady Anthea Fitzwalter from England, who now lives in
Lewes, Delaware. Time to SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL PUG in this
highly engaging mystery tale.
Sue is shocked awake by an alarm and races to her business
premises, where the door is smashed and sacks of pet food
have been stolen. Luckily her overnight staff had a routine
which kept them upstairs in safety. The police chief, once
he has a crime scene team present, sweeps Sue away because
a dog has been heard barking out on a lighthouse island.
They have to reach it by boat. While they rescue the
abandoned pug, Chief John Turner frets that maybe he was
lured out here.
The worst has happened; someone has been killed at Sue's
home. He was a worker at the German deli down the road.
This makes no sense, and it's very distressing. Sue doesn't
normally even lock her door. Actually, she's not security
conscious. Looks like she was the one who was deliberately
lured away from her location. There's an issue about a car
involved at the two crime scenes; Sue immediately decides
not to tell the chief that she knows the owner of a very
similar car. I would assume the car had been stolen to use
in the robbery, and I don't know why she didn't. Burglars
don't use their own cars.
A nice touch is that the town is celebrating finding
artefacts from an eighteenth-century shipwreck in Roosevelt
Inlet. Even this invites tension. Both the coast and dogs
make frequent appearances in this fast-moving mystery, with
the pets ranging from a Bernese Mountain Dog to a Dachshund
and the aforementioned homeless pug, Wags.
By halfway through the book I admit to getting tired of
being reminded that Lady Anthea is, well, Lady Anthea.
Every time she comes into the room it's Lady Anthea came in
and Lady Anthea picked up a cup of tea. In her normal
circle she's bound to be called Anthea or Bunty or
something so why the heavy formality? She's not a head of
state nor in a formal role in Delaware. It's like calling
your friend Professor Anthea all the time. That aside, this
is an interesting mystery with lots of character contrast
which should suit all age groups. Lane Stone is clearly
enjoying writing about her human and canine characters in
Palace series so pick up a dose of crime with
SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL PUG.
Buckingham Pet Palace may provide services fit for a
four-legged king, but thereâ€™s no use crying over spilled
kibbleâ€”not unless it leads to murder!
When a break-in at the Pet Palace robs Sue Patrick of more
than her beauty sleep, she intends to tidy her ransacked
doggy daycare and spa before making any rash decisions. But
after Sue abandons her better instincts to rescue a
petrified pug stranded at a lighthouse in the Delaware Bay
later that morning, sheâ€™s lured off mainland Lewes long
enough for a freshly murdered body to get dumped in her
driveway . . .
Aided by Lady Anthea Fitzwalter, her practically royal
business partner from across the pond, Sue sniffs out clues
about the yappy pug with a complicated history and the old
car spotted at both crime scenes in hopes of IDing the
culprit. As the investigation leads them back to the bay,
the ladies soon find themselves immersed in a case trickier
than a canine agility courseâ€”and chasing after a
well-groomed killer who will do anything to maintain a
perfect reputation . . .