Quieter Than Sleep
English professor and Emily Dickinson expert Karen Pelletier is as unlikely a sleuth as you'll ever find, and you'd think that an elite college such as Enfield would be as safe, cozy, and insulated as its reputation. But Enfield College is shaken to its Puritan roots when star English professor Randy Astin-Berger tumbles out of a closet into Karen's arms at a faculty cocktail party, strangled to death with his own flashy necktie. Karen struggles to remember Randy's last words, spoken just minutes before she caught his corpse. He'd been babbling something about a mysterious "master letter," but unfortunately she hadn't been listening.
Who would want to kill Randy Astin-Berger? Lieutenant Piotrowski of the Bureau of Criminal Investigation first suspects Karen, since she was the last person to be seen with Astin-Berger, but plenty of Enfield College denizens have reason to strangle the learned professor. Could it be the English professor who has just been denied tenure due to Randy's influence? Or the waif-like student he has seduced? Or the student's outraged father? Or, could it, just possibly, be the distinguished, but cuckolded, college president?