Larceny and Old Lace (Den of Antiquity Series #1)

Larceny and Old Lace (Den of Antiquity Series #1)

by Tamar Myers

Paperback(Mass Market Paperback - Reissue)

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For Whom The Bell Pulls Tolls

As owner of the Den of Antiquity, recently divorced(but never bitter!) Abigail Timberlake is accustomed to delving into the past, searching for losttreasures, and navigating the cutthroat world of rival dealers at flea marketsand auctions. Still, she never thought she'd be putting her expertise in mayhemand detection to other use — until crotchety "junque" dealer, Abby's aunt Eulonia Wiggins, was found murdered!

Although Abigail is puzzled by the instrument of death — an exquisite antiquebell pull that Aunt Eulonia never would have had the taste to aquire — she's willing to let the authorities find the culprit. But now, Auntie's priceless lace is missing,and somebody's threatened Abby's most priceless possession: her son, Charlie.It's up to Abby to put the murderer "on the block."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780380782390
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 06/28/1996
Series: Den of Antiquity Series , #1
Edition description: Reissue
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 451,141
Product dimensions: 4.18(w) x 6.75(h) x 0.56(d)

About the Author

Tamar Myers is the author of the Belgian Congo series and the Den of Antiquity series as well as the Pennsylvania-Dutch mysteries. Born and raised in the Congo, she lives in North Carolina.

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Larceny and Old Lace

Chapter One

Eulonia Wiggins was found strangled to death by an antique bellpull. It was afine example of nineteenthcentury needlework. On the blue velvet background,

a slendid red rooster paraded, his comb erect, his spurs as long as talons. Anelaborate crest of one of the finest noble families in England was displayedproudly above the cock. I would have charged at least $200 for the pull, more tothe right customer. I suppose if my aunt had to die by strangulation, the pullwas as suitable an implement as any. But I can't help thinking that if I hadreacted in a more rational and placating manner, my aunt might still be alive.

We -- the members of Selwyn Avenue Antique Dealers As sociation -- had gatheredtogether for our monthly breakfast at the local Denny's restaurant. Normally thisis just a social event, since our organization is too small to have any realbusiness. Today, however, the business was my aunt.

I must immediately point out that my aunt was the first of our group to open ashop on prestigious Selwyn Avenue. If it hadn't been for her pioneering spirit,and persuasive tongue (the zoning board was slow to come around), none of uswould have our shops today. Plainly put, we all owed her a great deal.

In the interest of fairness, I am compelled to say that her shop, Feathers 'NTreasures, had seen better days. Okay, to put it frankly, it was an eyesore, butshe didn't deserve to die for it. Lightly flogged, maybe. I mean, since when ispeeling paint a capital crime? As for those tacky cardboard signs in the windows,she did change them every time she ran a sale. I'll even admit that most of hermerchandise was garage saleleftovers, but hey, this is a free country. EuloniaWiggins, age eighty-six, had paid her dues to society. If the Selwyn AvenueAntique Dealers Association had a problem with my auntwell, they could lump it,or else answer to me.

My name is Abigail Louise Timberlake, and I am going to tell it like it is. Callme mean-spirited if you want, but never call me dishonest. Life is too short forpretense.

I am forty-six years old, and not ashamed to admit it. I have earned every one ofthose years. I weigh ninety-three pounds on a good day but have been known to hitthe triple digits by the time New Year's Day rolls around. My hair is naturallybrown, but I purposely put a gray streak in it, so as not to be mistaken for ateenager. That is the price I pay for not smoking. and staying clear of the sun.My eyes are cat green, and I have never needed glasses. That is the reward I getfor having picked Hugh Wiggins and Missy Monroe Wiggins as my parents. That, andmy height. I mean the lack of it.

I have one sibling, a younger brother named Toy. That's his real name. At anyrate, Toy is six foot four, and not think she is, the laws adopted. Either Mamawasn't the saint I of Mendel are a bunch of bunk, or Toy is some sort of genetic throwback. I preferto believe in choice C.

Toy lives in California and thinks of himself as an unemployed actor. In realityToy is a busboy for a sleazy restaurant where leather ties are required. AlthoughMama and I write to TOY every month, neither of us have heard from him directlyin several years. He has no phone.

I got married right after graduating from Winthrop College in Rock Hill, SouthCarolina. I met my husband, Buford Tim berlake, on the water slide at an areaamusement park. It was a mixed marriage. Buford was from North Carolina and a bigfan of North Carolina State. I rooted for Clemson. Buford had-, louder lungs andwe ended up settling in Charlotte.

Buford and I were lucky enough to have two children, a daughter, Susan, and ason, Charlie. I was lucky enough to be able to stay home and raise thesechildren. I won't say I was deliriously happy, but neither did I look for a gasoven into which to stick my head. Life chugged down a fairly predictable track, and wemanaged to hang on for the ride.

One day our engine jumped the track. It happened right around Buford'sforty-fifth birthday. The obstacle in our path was a blond bimbo with huge butperky boobs who called herself Tweetie. The boobs undoubtedly had names as well,perhaps supplied by her surgeon. Our marriage was over.

Did I mention that Buford was a lawyer? He handled personal injury cases, notdivorces, but he was plugged into the good-old-boy network. The only plugs I hadwere connected to household appliances. To make a long and gruesome storyshorter, Buford managed to keep our beautiful and expensive home in the MyersPark neighborhood of Charlotte, our two teenage children, Susan and Charlie, andour dog Scruffles. I got the cat, Dmitri.

Charlie was fifteen at the time and still lives with Buford, ,as does Scruffles.Fortunately for her, Susan, who was seventeen at the time, is now out of the nestand safely in college.

I said I was going to be honest, and so I will admit that Buford did offer to payme alimony. Even before the court compelled him to. Of course, the alimony Bufordvolunteered wouldn't support Mother Teresa in a year full of fast days, much lessyours truly. The amount he pays is nowhere close ID. as much as I deserve. SinceI would rather suck venom from a timber snake than accept money from BufordTimberlake, I rolled up my sleeves (something people my size are used to doing)and set about...

Larceny and Old Lace. Copyright © by Tamar Myers. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Larceny and Old Lace (Den of Antiquity Series #1) 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 15 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read Tamar's other series and while looking for another I found she had written this series. I liked this book so much I bought the next in the series.
MrsLee on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I was hoping to find a new mystery series I could enjoy, but it was not to be. This takes place in the South, and some of the details of mannerisms and places are interesting. I was hoping, that since the parties involved owned antique shops there might be more of those details involved, or perhaps, an intricate plot. I had read the author's book, "The Witch Doctor's Wife," which is why I hoped for good writing and plot. Sadly, the one weakness in that book, the dialogues, was a huge weakness in this. The characters did not behave as people would, it seemed like so much hyperbole. The denouement in this made me downright angry, it was so lame.All that being said, I suppose there are lots of folks who might enjoy this, as it seems like a typical "cozy" mystery to me. I won't be reading any more of this series, though.
photomarg on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Not one of my favorites in this series (which is not one of my favorite series) but entertaining.
madamejeanie on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Abigail Timberlake is recently divorced (and only a little bit bitter -- kind of like the ocean is a little bit salty) and owns an antique store. She's a member of an association of antique dealers that was started by her great-aunt Eulonia Wiggins, but the group is much more embarrassed by Eulonia now than grateful to her for having blazed the trail for them. Her store and her appearance have degenerated into a hodge-podge of used and broken items that are better suited to a flea market than an upscale antique district. In fact, at the monthly breakfast meeting of the Selwyn Avenue Antique Dealers Association, several of Abigail's fellow members are fairly vocal about wanting Eulonia and her junk store gone, no matter what it took. So, when Eulonia is found later that day dead in her own store, strangled by an antique bellpull that is finer than anything she'd have been likely to have in that shop, the finger of blame could be pointed at any one of the members of that illustrious group. Abigail is willing to let the police hunt down the murderer until she realizes that Aunt Eulonia's priceless lace collection is missing and someone is threatening Abigail's son, Charlie. It might be a little bit harder than she thought, though, to worm any information out of the handsome police detective assigned to the case, but when her kids are on the line, Abigail won't let anything stop her from getting to the truth.I'm also reading another series by Tamar Myers (the Amish Bed & Breakfast series) so thought I'd give this one a try. I have to say that while the writing style is, of course, much the same, the tone of this series is completely different. I got just a tad tired of reading about what a scumbag Abbie's ex-husband was, but I have to admit that I laughed out loud several times when the dialog was between Abbie and her mother. The characters were well-drawn, so even though the mystery was a bit weak, I'll read more in this series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed book This author almost as funny as Laura Levine Cute and funny characters
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This started out great and is VERY amusing (I like that in a cozy), but as it went on I realized I didn't care for the main character's sarcastic attitude. I particularly disliked her incessant habit of calling everyone "dear." Few of the other characters were likeable, and some were extremely annoying. If you happen to be from above the Mason Dixon line you won't like the constant dissing of "Yankees" either.
Elvin_Scribe More than 1 year ago
It's ok for a quick read ,however,it did not evoke any emotions. I prefer books, movies, to touch me or something where I can identify with the characters. I did not find anything with this book.
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