Who would try to poison a helpless cat in an old folks’ home? Is it a prank? An accident? Or something more sinister? Buckingham Courte’s own Carolina Pennsbury is just the amateur sleuth to find out. As the beautiful cat Apolonia is owned by her friend Margie, one of the Courte’s most pitiful and harrassed residents, Carolina suspects that the poison was actually intended for Margie, so she gathers all of her investigative powers to determine the evil mind behind the devilish plot and to protect her friend until she is able to bring the culprit to justice. She soon narrows the field of poisoner candidates down to three new residents who have filled an empty seat at the table where Carolina, Margie, and their three friends––Annie, Rita, and Dot––all dine regularly. Could the potential murderer be the lacivious Mike who can’t seem to keep his hands off any of the Courte’s female residents? Could it be frigid Frieda who finds Margie’s behavior, appearance, and background totally tasteless? Or could it be the polite but boring Paula who has all the personality of the chair she occupies? This may be Carolina’s toughest case––a case of of DINNER AND DEATH.
Helen Grochmal was raised in a coal town in Pennsylvania until sent to college by the Great Society of the 1960s. After graduation from what is now Wilkes University, she worked in the Civil Service to pay her way through an M.A. in English from Penn State and an M.L.S. in Library Service from Rutgers. Working as a professional librarian for over 20 years, Helen published various articles in library journals, ending her career as an Associate Professor at a state university in Pennsylvania. She began writing fiction in her 60’s when she moved to a retirement home with her cat. In addition to the two books in the Carolina Pennsbury mystery series, she has recently been trying her hand at writing flash fiction and short stories. So far, her stories will be published in With Painted Words, Minerva Rising, Over My Dead Body!, and Bards and Sages Quarterly.