Too Darn Hot

Publisher: Ballantine Books
I’d had two murders since last spring, solved them both. The first one was prime and it got a lotta attention in the fish wrappers, so I had a bunch of clients for awhile. Just cause people saw my name in the paper they figured I was the best (which I might be). Not bad for a twenty-six-year-old gal from Newark, New Jersey.

It’s the middle of World War II, but not all the killing is happening overseas. In a sweltering New York City summer, scrappy steno-turned-sleuth Faye Quick–kicked upstairs when her boss ships out–takes on a new case that would make even the most experienced P.I. sweat bullets.

It all starts with a beautiful woman. Heartbroken Claire Turner turns on the waterworks in Faye’s office, begging for help in finding her beau, Private Charlie Ladd, gone missing while on leave from Uncle Sam’s army. But when Faye busts into Charlie’s hotel room, she doesn’t find anyone–anyone alive, that is.

But where’s Charlie? Because the corpse in the hotel room might not be him. And that leads Faye to wonder if the unfortunate stiff was Charlie’s target practice.

In a case with more twists, starts, and stops than the Third Avenue El, Faye learns that some shocking truths are hidden behind the fog of war–a personal war being fought on the home front.

Brimming over with big band music, hairdos in snoods, and unfiltered smokes–the same irresistible 1940s detail that made This Dame for Hire such a treat–the second adventure of indefatigable Faye solidifies her status as one of Sandra Scoppettone’s most appealing characters. Too Darn Hot is sizzling fun readers are sure to make Quick work of.

From the Hardcover edition.


Chapter 1

Yeah, it was hot enough to fry an egg on the sidewalk. I never could understand why people said that. Did somebody fry one then eat it? Who’d wanna eat a fried egg from the sidewalk? Especially in a city like New York. Maybe I’d try it. Not the eating part, the frying. But then...
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Praise for Sandra Scoppettone’s This Dame for Hire

“Faye Quick is a real hoot, a tough-talking, wisecracking, lovable character in the mold of Sam Spade and Philip Marlowe. Scoppettone also does a bang-up job of re-creating New York City of the World War II era, a rich setting for a mystery story.”
–Chicago Sun-Times

“The author hits the ground running with the appealing, savvy Faye and her network of cops and friends. The strong characters are complemented by Scoppettone’s insightful look at World War II New York.”
–Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel

“[Faye] is the real gem here. She rises to every situation, even as she doesn’t believe she has it in her. She’s fun, caring, loves art and literature, hates pretense, and is quick with the zingers.”
–Detroit Free Press

“Quick is a most interesting and original creation, and Sandra Scoppettone has come up with a vivid picture of a city not only surviving but thriving under a cloud of wartime gloom. . . . Her details of life in Manhattan . . . sound like the real McCoy.”
–Chicago Tribune

“[Faye Quick is] a fascinating new heroine to be watched.”
–Library Journal (starred review)

From the Hardcover edition.