Wired for Murder (Market Center Mysteries, #2)
by Karen McCullough
Review by Mel Jacob
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9781535020275
Date: 10 June 2016 List Price $11.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Initially, it's business as usual for Heather McNeil, floor manager and troubleshooter for trade show events, with delayed erection of booths, missing materials, and disputes between various vendors. However, all that changes when one obnoxious participant is found dead in the back of a booth.
A variety of complaints surface, including some mysterious intermittent disruptions to WiFi communications. As complaints mount, one vendor agrees to use his equipment to track down the source. The intermittent periods make it difficult.
One vendor is using a popular fashion model for a demo that threatens access to other vendors because of hordes of fans. Fortunately, Heather is able to use a ballroom instead so other vendors are not inconvenienced.
Early on, another vendor has an angry and noisy argument with the head of one of the largest companies participating. He accuses the company of stealing his technology and threatens to stop them. Later, the man is found dead in the back of a vendor's booth. Heather notifies the police, but also pleads with them to minimize the disruption to all the other vendors.
With the police initially unsuccessful, Heather decides to use her knowledge of the vendors and their activities along with help of Scott Brandon, a security guard once a police detective and Heather's occasional date, to solve the crime. A race begins to identify the murderer before the trade show ends and all the participants leave.
Casual gossip reveals useful details about the murder victim. Brilliant but abrasive, he has few friends. Then one of his few friends disappears. Rumor has it he was expecting a big job offer from a competitor.
The romance with Scott is intriguing partly because he holds his past close. McCullough manages to make the technology clear enough to make the narrative. She focuses on people and their interactions to ultimately identify the guilty party. An accomplished writer, McCullough has a list of romances and mysteries to her credit. Wired for Murder is the second Market Center Mystery.