Playing the Devil (A Bridge to Death Mystery)
by R.J. Lee
Today I am pleased to welcome Wendy Winchester from the Bridge to Death Mysteries!
Hello readers! My name is Wendy Winchester, amateur sleuth and investigative reporter in the Mississippi River port of Rosalie. Let me take a moment to catch my breath because the author who writes me, R.J.Lee, has put me in a doozy of a mystery this time. He’s called it PLAYING THE DEVIL, and it’s the second time he’s made me solve a murder in his BRIDGE TO DEATH MYSTERY series.
Fortunately for me, he’s endowed me with some ‘savant’-like cognitive skills. Perhaps I inherited them from my police chief father, Captain Bax Winchester. Daddy is always after me to join the police force, but the thing is, I don’t like guns, I just like puzzles. Imagine that! Someone with the last name of Winchester not liking guns. But I prefer to use my brain, and I used it quite well in solving the first mystery Mr. Lee devised for me—GRAND SLAM MURDERS. In that one, I had to work hard to discover who had poisoned the four wealthy widows who composed the venerable Rosalie Bridge Club with potassium cyanide during their bridge luncheon. Imagine the nerve of someone!
In this new mystery, I’ve gone ahead and formed by my very own bridge club at the Rosalie Country Club. I’ve managed to scrounge up one table of four for starters, and I’m one of the four. It’s just that I want to play bridge and play it well, in addition to solving crimes. At least, that’s the way Mr. Lee has created me.
So, what happens on the very first afternoon of the initial meeting of my Bridge Bunch? My nemesis at the Country Club, Brent Ogle, throws a wrench into the works. I never dreamed I’d encounter such a lout of a man out there. He’s a major contributor to the RCC and truly throws his weight around. He’s one of those ex-college quarterbacks who still wants everyone to cheer for his every move and every word out of his mouth. Plus, he’s one of those ‘personal injury’ lawyers who rubs it in every time he wins a settlement. Brent combines every reprehensible trait it’s possible for a man to have: he’s a sexist, a bully, a xenophobe and a homophobe and mistreats everyone equally out at the country club.
Here the four of us are trying to play our first game of bridge together when Brent and his two golfing partners roll into the Great Room where they proceed to get drunk across the way, then nearly get into a fistfight over something. After the country club’s first female golf pro breaks up the fight (I do love how Mr. Lee creates strong women, including myself haha!), Brent staggers back onto the outside deck to soak in the hot tub.
But wouldn’t you know it? A terrible thunderstorm crouches over Rosalie, and the club loses power for thirty minutes. We’re all plunged into darkness, and when Carly Ogle, Brent’s long-suffering wife, decides to check on her husband in that same darkness with her cell phone flashlight, she discovers him clubbed over the head and quite dead. The weapon turns out to be the pestle that the bartender uses to make his famous mint juleps, the same bartender that Brent has taunted endlessly about his Cuban heritage. But there were eight other people in the clubhouse during the blackout, including myself, and we are all suspects in the official investigation conducted by my father and detective boyfriend, Ross.
I’m not content to stand by idly, of course. My wonderful new female editor insists I use my knowledge of the RCC to do an investigation for the paper, and what I uncover is mind-boggling. I’ll do no spoilers here, but let me just say that my author has outdone himself this time. He has both managed to make me look brilliant and also put me in harms’ way. Yikes! Be sure you grab a copy and see for yourself. Thanks, Wendy Winchester!
About Playing the Devil
Playing the Devil (A Bridge to Death Mystery)
2nd in Series
Publisher: Kensington (January 28, 2020)
Paperback: 304 pages
Digital ASIN: B07R7M378R
Reporter and bridge player Wendy Winchester once again plays ace detective when a country club member is murdered in a hot tub . . .
Now an investigative reporter for the Rosalie Citizen in the Mississippi River port of Rosalie, Wendy still likes to unwind over a game of cards. Following the demise of the Rosalie Bridge Club, she’s started her own group at the Rosalie Country Club. During the first meeting of the Country Club Bridge Players, the dummy has barely been laid down when another dummy gets in a scuffle at the bar across the room. Bridge player Carly Ogle’s husband Brent is at it again.
After the club’s new female golf pro breaks up the fight, Brent storms off to soak in a hot tub. But Carey soon finds the bullying Brent dead in the water, clubbed over the head with the pestle the barkeep uses to crush leaves for mint juleps.
Racist, sexist, homophobic, and an all-around lout, Brent made enough enemies to fill a bridge tournament. So Wendy has to play her cards right to get the story—and stay out of hot water long enough to put the squeeze on the killer . . .
About the Author
R. J. Lee follows in the mystery-writing footsteps of his father, R. Keene Lee, who wrote fighter pilot and detective stories for Fiction House, publishers of WINGS Magazine and other ‘pulp fiction’ periodicals in the late ’40’s and ’50’s. Lee was born and grew up in the Mississippi River port of Natchez but also spent thirty years living in the Crescent City of New Orleans. A graduate of the University of the South (Sewanee) where he studied creative writing under Sewanee Review editor, Andrew Lytle, Lee now resides in Oxford, Mississippi.
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