A Dilly of a Death Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of A Dilly of a Death

Berkley, Jan 2003, 23.95, 336 pp.
ISBN 0425193993

China Bayles left a thriving law practice in Houston to become a shop owner in Pecan Springs, a quiet little town except for the occasional murder that somehow China is always investigating. Homicide is the last thing on China's mind as she gets ready for Picklefest, an annual event celebrating Morgan's Premier Pickles, the largest pickle making place west of the Mississippi.
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Phoebe Morgan controls Picklefest with an iron fist in a velvet glove. When the committee needs to meet with Phoebe, neither she, nor her boy toy Todd Kellerman can be found. A hard rain flushes Phoebe's body out of a containment area right outside the pickle factory. It isn't long before, the sheriff discovers that she was killed but she had so many enemies who wanted to kill her, he doesn't know where to start investigating first. Lucky for him he has China and Ruby who dig up enough information that China begins to realize who the killer might be.

A DILLY OF A DEATH is a fantastic amateur sleuth novel as China deals with two businesses, Ruby's illegitimate daughter's problems, her & husband's her career all the while she is trying to find out who killed Phoebe and Todd. Readers care about China because the most important people in her life is her husband and her stepson and she never puts them on the back burner even when she is pulled in several directions at once. Susan Wittig Albert once again provides a who-done-it that is almost impossible to solve by a mere mortal.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of A Dilly of a Death

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book descript. of violence and chases 10%Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 40%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 30%How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) 20% Tone of story    -   suspenseful (sophisticated fear) How difficult to spot villain?    -   Very difficult--no foreshadowing/clues Time/era of story:    -   2000+ (Present) What % of story relates directly to the mystery, not the subplot?    -   80% Kind of investigator    -   amateur citizen investigator Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Any non-mystery subplot?    -   feelings towards family/friends Crime Thriller    -   Yes Murder Mystery (killer unknown)    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Female Profession/status:    -   small businessman Age:    -   40's-50's Ethnicity/Race    -   White/American


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Texas

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Amount of dialog    -   significantly more dialog than descript

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