"Watertight mystery is full of suspense and fun"
Reviewed by Sharon Galligar Chance
Posted March 6, 2011
Mystery Woman Sleuth
Georgiana Neverall is still plugging away as a plumber's
apprentice, putting in her time before she is qualified to
take the test to earn her plumber's license. But that
doesn't mean she doesn't like a good mystery or two, but
this time around, she may have her hands full of more than
a wrench or two.
When her mother announces she is marrying real estate mogul
Gregory Whitlock and moving in with him, she offers to sell
Georgiana her house. But before the sale can be closed, it
needs to pass inspection. Georgie offers to do the plumbing
inspection, but she isn't prepared for what she finds
underneath the house -- the body of her mother's fiancĂ©.
0f course the first person suspected of the killing is
Georgie's mom and Georgie soon finds herself digging
through clues to try to save her mother from paying for
someone else's crime. But Georgie also has to keep her head
above water or she'll end up as next dead body if she's not
DRIP DEAD is the 3rd novel in Christy Evan's Georgiana
Neverall Mystery series, and continues the adventures of
the lady plumber/mystery solver. Evans once again leads her
characters on a merry chase as she weaves a lively mystery
that is fun for the reader to try to solve. Light-hearted,
but with just enough bite to keep the suspense tense, DRIP
DEAD proves to be another hit for Christy Evans. I look
forward to more stories from this talented writer.
When plumber's apprentice Georgiana Neverall crawls under
her mother's house to check the pipes, she's horrified to
find her mother's flashy fiancĂ©, real estate mogul Gregory
Whitlock, dead in the dirt. Instead of a wedding ring,
Georgiana's mother is soon wearing handcuffs, accused of
killing the man she loved. To clear her mother's name,
Georgiana's going to have to crawl into a few more dark
spaces and uncover secrets Whitlock was hiding.
Was I having second thoughts about buying the house? Was
that why I was stalling? Barry Hickey of Hickey & Hickey
bossâ€”said it was a good deal, but could he be sure? How much
did he really know
about the condition of the house?
There was only one
way to find out.
I pulled a mask over my nose and
mouth, blocking out the
musty smell that seeped from the crawl space, and wiggled
through the opening. I
wanted to get this over with before Sandra Neverallâ€”mother,
extraordinaire, and doyenne of Whitlock Estates Realtyâ€”came
home and decided to
I tried to get my bearings, mentally
picturing the floor
plan above my head. To the far right was a wall that divided
the house from the
garage. On this side of that wall was the kitchen.
could start there.
I crawled between the footings, my
flashlight casting a
narrow line of bright light in the darkness. Cold seeped up
from beneath me,
penetrating the heavy denim of my coveralls. The calendar
might say it was
summer, but the dirt under the house hadnâ€™t got that
The pipes under the kitchen were galvanized
surprise given the age of the house. There was no way to
know what shape they
were in, since they corroded from the inside out, but the
life expectancy of
galvanized was only about thirty years.
I would likely
be replacing pipes in the near future.
I scribbled a
few notes in a small notebook and stuffed it
back in breast pocket of my coveralls. This was one place I
agreed with Barry. A
pencil and paper were the best tools for the jobâ€”I wouldnâ€™t
want to drag electronic
gizmos under a house with me.
I turned left, moving
slowly between the footings,
imagining the rooms above my head. I moved under the dining
room, toward the
living room, bedrooms, and bathroom beyond.
about where I thought the hallway should be, a
sliver of light caught my eye. I doused the flashlight for a
minute, letting my
eyes adjust to the low light. Sure enough, there was a
narrow band of light in
the floor above, outlining a square about three feet on a
On the dirt below the strip of light there was a
shadow. A large box, maybe. Had mom stored something under
the house? As far as
I knew, everything was stacked neatly in labeled boxes in
What was down here in the cold and
I turned the flashlight back on and worked my
the object. In the beam of the flashlight I could see that
it was several
smallish boxes stacked on top of one
Something stuck out from one end of the pile
of boxes. It
wasnâ€™t another box; the shape was irregular, though most of
it was hidden from
sight behind the stacked boxes.
The crawl space was
more than musty, and I was grateful for
the small protection of the face mask. I had the sinking
feeling I was going to
find a small deceased animal somewhere in my travels,
judging by the odor that
seeped under the mask.
I was close enough now to see
that the boxes were wooden
shipping crates. Only a couple feet on each side, they could
easily have been
lowered through the opening faintly outlined above.
curiosity was piqued. I wanted to know what was in those
crates, and why they were hidden under the house I was
buyingâ€”my momâ€™s house
and my old family home.
It was like a buried
I suppose I could have crawled back out and
called Mom to
ask her what this was all about, but I didnâ€™t want to wait
for an answer, or
give her another chance to discuss every minute detail of
the wedding. Why
couldnâ€™t she just elope to Reno or Las Vegas?
close enough to make out a shipping label on one box.
It was addressed to Gregory, my soon-to-be stepfather, with
a return address in
Parisâ€”France, not Texas.
A shiver ran through me. I
couldnâ€™t think of a single good
reason for Gregory to get a shipment from outside the
country and hide it under
my motherâ€™s house.
I could think of several bad
I wondered if my mother might have a big
Then I realized I was kidding myself. Just
wasnâ€™t the man Iâ€™d choose for Mom to marry, it didnâ€™t mean
he was running guns
or hiding nukes.
I moved to one side, trying to guess
how many boxes were
stacked under the house.
I shined my flashlight over
the scene in front of me,
trying to make sense of what I saw. Something didnâ€™t look
right, no matter how
I moved the light or turned my head.
I heard a scream.
It took a few seconds to realize it came
Momâ€™s problem just got a lot
The lumpy shape behind the boxes was Gregory
And I was pretty sure he was dead.
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