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For Scott Hatcher, a former television writer turned struggling novelist with a failing marriage to boot, social-distancing and mask-wearing feel like fitting additions to his already surreal life. When his wife Marie and neighbor John Bergman disappear in the middle of the raging COVID-19 pandemic, Scott is naturally mystified and disturbed, but he is also about to learn that his picturesque neighborhood hides more than just the mundane routines of suburban life. When a fire claims the empty house for sale next door, the entire community is shocked when the charred remains of Marie and John are found inside. Stranger still, stockpiles of valuable Personal Protection Equipment, clearly stolen, were destroyed in the blaze alongside them. As the neighborhood reels from the loss, Scott and Bergman’s earthy and enticing widow, Rachel, not only find themselves under investigation for the crime, but also inexorably drawn to one another. As tensions reach a fever pitch, the tale—which is at once familiar and ordinary, yet bizarre and eerie—shows that, just like life in 2020’s uncertain times, dread and danger lurk below the hidden underside of everyday suburbia.
About the Author
Raymond Benson is the author of over forty published books. He is most well-known as the third—and first American—author of continuation James Bond novels, commissioned by the Ian Fleming copyright holders. In total, six original 007 novels, three film novelizations, and three short stories were published worldwide between 1997 and 2002. His bestselling and critically praised five-book serial, The Black Stiletto, is in development as a possible film or TV series. Raymond’s other recent acclaimed novels of suspense are Blues in the Dark, In the Hush of the Night, and The Secret on Chicory Lane.
“The quirky structure of the novel, evoking a stage play, lulls you into a false, cozy sense of security… but don't be fooled—violence and murder are lurking in the background. Benson is a deft and assured storyteller with an amiable, warm and gentle voice reminiscent of Burl Ives or a grown-up John Boy Walton, and this may just be his masterpiece.” – Lee Goldberg #1 New York Times bestselling author of Lost Hills
“Imagine a chatty narrator walking you through a sunny suburban neighborhood and revealing things the smiling residents would rather stay in the dark. Intriguing, shocking, and bleakly comic, one thing is certain; nothing is as it seems on Marigold Way.” –AJ Hartley, New York Times bestselling author of Burning Shakespeare
“Raymond Benson's The Mad, Mad Murders of Marigold Way is absolutely brilliant; truly one of the most original stories I've ever read. Clever, witty, unexpected, and utterly engaging, I loved this book!” – Karen Dionne, #1 internationally bestselling author of The Marsh King’s Daughter and The Wicked Sister
"This stellar 2020 mystery focuses on a quiet suburb. Though the characters are painted with convincing brushstrokes, it’s the narrator who steals the show. This wild roller coaster of a novel is an attention-grabber from first page to last." —Peter Cannon, Publishers Weekly
“ 'Friends, this is a little tale about some murders.' The opening sentence from Raymond Benson’s new dramedy mystery sets the tone. Perfect read during the Halloween spooky season." —Gilion Dumas, LibraryThing