Mourning in Miniature
Gal Strip 1


Mourning Cover




In the fourth book in the series, GERRY signs up to attend a high school reunion at a hotel in San Francisco. The alums are her students from Abraham Lincoln High School, where she taught for more than two decades. There's trouble in store, however, for her good friend and former student ROSIE, when Rosie is accused of murdering an old flame. Gerry and MADDIE, now eleven years old, find their lives turned upside down as they try to prove Rosie's innocence.

By the time the week is over, Geraldine and Maddie have dealt with robbery, fraud, and murder, all wrapped up in the world of the very small.



David Bridges checked the mini-bar in the suite for the third time. He'd made a couple of special requests for the evening and wanted to be sure they'd been carried out. He assured himself once again that his staff had come through, right down to stocking a bottle of the best white wine the Napa Valley vineyards could offer.

He thought of the elegant Duns Scotus as his hotel. His position as Chief Engineer at one of the best-known hotels in San Francisco brought him high-level responsibilities and a great deal of respect. He oversaw the entire maintenance staff and was a member of the management executive committee, with a say in all the important contract negotiations for facility and equipment upgrades.

He'd cashed in on his status at the hotel and assigned himself this royal suite on the eleventh floor.

David tugged on his dark suit jacket, a little too snug around his waist these days, but on the whole he thought he kept pretty fit for a middle-aged man.

He congratulated himself on all his successes.

This weekend his high school classmates, his cheering fans, were coming to the city for their thirtieth reunion. David had arranged for everyone to get a good deal on rooms at the Duns Scotus, much lower than the rack rate. How many of the smart kids who made the honor roll and played chess could do that for their friends?

Three decades, he thought, like the snap of his fingers. He ran his hand along the silky floral comforter, a match to the drapes, and looked ahead a couple of hours. He had big plans for tonight, both business and pleasure.

He walked to the window, an entire wall of glass, and took in the sweeping view of the San Francisco Bay—a commanding view, the Duns Scotus brochure said—from his spot on a hill higher than any building in his hometown of Lincoln Point, California, an hour to the south.

This suite and every other room would be even more spectacular once he made sure the right contractor got the approval for the remodel.

David pulled his heavy trophy out of his luggage and held it up so the stone base was waist high. The cold eyes of the bronze drop-back quarterback met his, transporting him to his years at Abraham Lincoln High School three decades ago. The trophy and his jersey, number thirty-six, had been on display in an ALHS hallway all these years, but this weekend it would have center stage at the hotel as his whole class gathered to reminisce. He relished the idea of reliving his glory days.

Too bad his personal life was in shambles. But it wasn't all his fault and by Monday things might be better along those lines, too.

On the whole, the outlook for the weekend was good. Promises had been made and it was time to call them in, one way or another.

The phone rang. He picked up the unit in the living room and listened to the insistent voice on the other end.

"We're clear," David responded. "It's do or die."

He hung up and sat on the sofa, facing his trophy where he'd placed it on the credenza, his name facing out, of course. He thought back to his starring role in the big games on Thanksgiving and Homecoming Weekend, the hallway of lockers where he'd had his share of quick embraces, classrooms where he'd done as much note-passing as note-taking.

He sat back and linked his hands behind his neck. A small shiver of doubt crept up his spine. He shook it off. This was his weekend.

What could go wrong?