89. I've loved Donna Andrews' wacky mysteries for years, since discovering her marvelous Murder with Peacocks. In this newest Meg Langslow mystery, all the usual elements are there: unpleasant character found murdered, suspects abound, and a unique setting--this time, the Un-Fair (basically a county fair) that Meg is helping to run. (Actually, given that this is Meg, she's basically running the fair. In theory she does have a co-chair).
Andrews' mysteries are consistently fun and smart and this was no exception. I found, though, that I was less interested in the mystery than I was in Meg's shenanigans--in particular, her and her husband's new-found fascination for heirloom breeds of animals. The descriptions of the fair were among the best parts of the novel. I found, too, that I missed much of Meg's extended family (her father, Rose Noire, cousin Horace) who showed up only for brief glimpses. Instead we got treated to some Shifleys, who, while interesting, can't hold a candle to Meg's family.