Dunne, Sep 2003, 22.95, 208 pp.
The Nortons want to relocate the remains of a cousin from her burial spot under the Martha's Vineyard cemetery's yew tree to a plot in Milwaukee. However, the gravediggers find no remains when they inter the dirt at the location. Ninety-two year old Victoria Trumbull comes by just as the diggers give up assuming that the exhuming should have been somewhere else. Rumors say otherwise.
Not long afterward, those interested in the dead girl soon join her in the afterlife as someone begins murdering people. The coffin of the Norton cousin suddenly vanishes though Victoria had managed to strip a piece from it. Meanwhile Victoria saves retired foreign service employee Dahlia Atherton, who suffers from cancer, from drinking poisoned tea. Dahlia provides quite a tale about double cross involving gem smuggling and Victoria sees a link to the murders and the missing corpse, but will she live long enough to save the next season.
THE CEMETERY YEW is filled with twists and turns that will keep readers interest as they navigate Martha's Vineyard led by a nonagenarian guide. However, the myriad of subplots needs leaps of faith by readers to accept as they meander all over the place with tenuous links. Victoria remains a creaky yet solid scrappy sleuth with fans savoring her latest senior snooping. Other cozy readers will go elsewhere for the late summer.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner