Cover image for Vineyard blues : a Martha's Vineyard mystery
Vineyard blues : a Martha's Vineyard mystery
Craig, Philip R., 1933-2007.
Publication Information:
New York : Scribner, [2000]

Physical Description:
223 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Central Library X Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks
Central Library X Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks
Grand Island Library X Adult Fiction Mystery/Suspense
Kenmore Library X Adult Fiction Mystery/Suspense
Orchard Park Library X Adult Fiction Mystery/Suspense
Audubon Library X Adult Fiction Mystery/Suspense

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It's been many years since J. W. Jackson has seen Corrie Appleyard, so J.W.'s delighted when the elderly African-American bluesman strolls unexpectedly up his driveway, guitar in hand. Corrie has come to Martha's Vineyard to play a few shows and to catch up on old times. But there's more to the Vineyard mix this summer than music, bluefish, and friendship.

Someone is torching the run-down summerhouses that a reviled local slumlord rents out to college kids who flock to the island for sun, sex, and summer jobs. J.W. and Zee, busy adding a wing to their house for precocious offspring Joshua and Diana, might almost cheer for the arsonist if they didn't fear someone would get hurt.

They are especially concerned for Corrie Appleyard, who opts to bunk in one of the dilapidated structures. Corrie doesn't need much in the way of amenities, and a friend's grandson has offered him hospitality. It's a bad choice. When a fire breaks out and an unidentified body is pulled from the scorched ruins, J.W. fears the worst. Corrie's precious guitar lies abandoned nearby, an ominous sign that the old man who seeme

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Drenched in local color--and the locale is the ever-adorable Martha's Vineyard--this insinuatingly attractive series, starring J. W. and Zee Jackson, grows and deepens. Retired cop and chauvinistic Vineyard native J. W. finds Corrie Appleyard in front of his home one day. Corrie is an old bluesman, friend of J. W.'s late father. He's come to play in a local club and stay with a grandchild's friends in one of the rattletrap homes a local lawyer rents out to bands of college kids. When two of those houses burn down, a body turns up, and Corrie disappears, arson and worse are suspected. J. W. is hired by the lawyer to do a little sleuthing, and Zee strongly objects. We get nice meals (there's always a recipe or two), minilectures on appropriate tourist behavior, and the requisite mild cantankerousness from our hero, who refuses to submit to a computer, answering machine, or even a color TV. --GraceAnne A. DeCandido

Publisher's Weekly Review

Despite a propitious start, Craig's latest offering in the Vineyard series soon degrades into a dull tale hampered by cardboard characters and a simplistic plot. Former Boston cop J.W. Jackson, the easy-going narrator, is surprised and pleased to see an old friend of his father's, Corrie Appleyard, stroll up his Martha's Vineyard driveway. Corrie, a blues guitarist who has come to the island for a few small gigs, renews his friendship with J.W., whom he hasn't seen in 30 years. After an enjoyable evening with J.W. and his wife, Zee, Corrie returns to his lodging, a house owned by slumlord Ben Krane. Several days later, as Corrie is about to return to the mainland, that house burns to the ground with an unidentified body inside. Suspecting arson, the third against one of his rental properties, Krane hires Jackson to investigate, despite their unexplained mutual animosity. Jackson, meanwhile, fearing that a now-missing Corrie is the arson victim, has been asked by friend Susanna to help identify the man who has been harassing her over the phone about her former life in the porn industry. The premise for both plots is solid enough, but Jackson's irritatingly perfect wife and children are too unrealistic to be believed, while other characters lack personality. Predictable endings to both mysteries cap off a disappointing novel in which the only remaining question is how many times the Jackson children get taken for ice cream. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

J.W. Jackson, ex-Boston cop and series sleuth, investigates intentionally set fires targeting Martha's Vineyard houses rented to college students. After an unidentified body is found in a house rented to J.W.'s visiting friend, J.W. becomes involved. Solid. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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