The Christmas Fair Killer by Amy Patricia Meade

The Christmas Fair Killer

The Christmas Fair Killer (A Tish Tarragon Mystery Book 3) by Amy Patricia Meade
English | 2020 | Mystery & Thriller | ePUB | 2.3 MB

Christmas, cookies and a corpse: Tish Tarragon is drawn into a deadly puzzle when a young actress is murdered at the Hobson Glen Holiday Fair.

Literary caterer Letitia ‘Tish’ Tarragon has pulled out all the stops for her booth at the Hobson Glen Holiday Fair, theming her appetising offerings around the festive performances by the Williamsburg Theatre Group. But when Tish meets the cast, she is surprised by the hostility between members of the allegedly close-knit troupe, centred around their star actress, the beautiful, talented yet mysterious ing�nue, Jenny Inkpen.

Determined to spread some Christmas cheer, Tish volunteers to deliver breakfast to the eight actors, but is horrified to discover Jenny dead in her trailer the next morning. As Tish attempts to find out more about the group’s leading lady, she soon uncovers lies, jealousy and a series of shocking secrets. Can Tish expose a cold-blooded killer before the fair is over?

It was twenty minutes past nine when the Williamsburg Theater Group took their final bow and the stage curtains closed on the first Twelfth Night performance of the long weekend. Having experienced a dearth of visitors during the show, Tish, Jules, Celestine, and Schuyler were suddenly met with a rush of theatergoers purchasing a last-minute cake or hot toddy before the fair closed at ten.

Their food and beverage orders fulfilled, the famished theatergoers departed, only to be replaced by several members of the cast of Twelfth Night in various stages of the undressing process. First in the queue stood the star of the evening’s performance. Jenny Inkpen, twenty-two-year-old ingénue, was tall and slender with the elegance of a young Audrey Hepburn. Her long brown hair had been rolled into a tight bun at the nape of her neck, and although she had traded her doublets and breeches for a heavyweight pink tracksuit, her face still bore the understated makeup required for the role of Cesario/Viola.

‘How much for a coffee?’ she inquired with the same commanding voice she had used to enrapture the audience just minutes earlier.

‘All food and refreshments are complimentary for theater group members,’ Tish explained. ‘Courtesy of the interim mayor’s office.’

‘Really? In that case, maybe I’ll have some cake. Do you have anything gluten-free?’

Celestine retrieved a slice of golden fruitcake and held it aloft. ‘Dried pear, apricot, ginger, and almond.’

‘That sounds amazing.’

‘We greatly enjoyed your performance,’ Tish complimented as she applied the coffee and cake to the mayor’s office tab.

‘Thanks. I prefer the meatier roles, but these lighthearted plays are fun for the holidays.’

From somewhere in the queue, someone clicked his or her tongue in derision.

‘I’ll have a coffee and whatever stew that is cooking.’ The actor who had played Sebastian, still in costume, jumped in front of the line. With his soft brown eyes and fine features, he was perfectly cast as Viola’s twin brother, for he and Jenny could have been siblings in real life. ‘Maybe we can have our coffee together, Jenny, and review tonight’s performance? I thought it went really well.’

‘You’d be better off using that time to go over your lines,’ she replied frostily. ‘You flubbed two of them in the second act alone.’ With that, Jenny Inkpen collected her coffee and cake, said a quiet thank you to Tish, Jules, and Celestine, and marched off behind the stage.

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