Monday, November 10, 2014

Chorus Lines, Caviar, and Corpses (A Happy Hoofers Mystery)- Mary McHugh Kensington,

Chorus Lines, Caviar, and Corpses (A Happy Hoofers Mystery)
Mary McHugh
Kensington, Nov 4 2014, $24.00
ISBN: 9781617733598

In their fifties, believing they needed exercise and loving tap dancing; Perfect Bride magazine Travel Editor Tina Powell, community theater director Janice Rogers, therapist Pat Keeler, housewife Mary Louise Temple and documentarian Gini Miller formed the Happy Hoofers.  The YouTube video of the five fierce friends forever became popular and soon afterward they were hired to dance on a cruise ship sailing from Moscow to St. Petersburg.

The crew of misfits leaves a lot to be desired, but none worse than British chef Kenneth Allgood.  While the fearsome five hoof the Volga, his food is atrocious and he becomes angry when someone tells him so.  Allgood warns Gini to shut up or else and accosts Tina, but passenger Barry Sheldon intervenes.  Soon afterward, the police fish Allgood’s corpse out of the river though his death improved the meals considerably.  When a passenger vanishes, the Happy Hoofers agree they need to stay near each to insure sailing the Volga is not their final curtain call.

The Happy Hoofer’s opening act is a fine friendship drama starring five affable females; who have each other’s back when it matters.  The mystery acts more as a support plot to the appealing storyline’s focus on the boomer buddies cruising Russia.

Harriet Klausner

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