60 Years of Journalism

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Popular Press, 1985 - Literary Collections - 240 pages
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The cave of Lascaux may be closed to the public, but five scholars a day are allowed inside, and Nora Barnes has finagled an appointment. True, she may have fudged a bit in her letter to the authorities, but she does teach art history, and she isn t about to miss her chance to see the world s most famous prehistoric paintings. Nora and her high-spirited husband, Toby, are visiting the Dordogne, in the southern French region of the Aquitaine. Aware that the Dordogne s renown for cave art is matched only by its reputation for delicious cuisine, the couple has also signed up for a cooking class at a nearby chateau, but they soon find that more than food is on their minds.
During their tour of the cave, another visitor is murdered. When the local inspector pegs Nora and Toby as suspects, they embark on a mission to solve the crime, tracing strange links between a Cro-Magnon symbol and a thirteenth-century religious cult. As they match wits with the crusty inspector, Nora finds herself immersed in the notebooks of a forgotten artist who once lived in the chateau. In sifting through the artist s papers and uncovering old secrets, she begins to piece together the motives for the murder. But has she cooked up more trouble than she can handle?

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About the author (1985)

Mystery writer James Mallahan Cain was born in Annapolis, Maryland, in 1892. He received his B.A. and M.A. from Washington College, and served in the military as editor-in-chief of the official newspaper of the 79th Division, American Expeditionary Forces. Cain worked as a staff reporter for the Baltimore Sun; he became a professor of journalism in the 1920s; he worked as a Hollywood screenwriter in the 1930s and 40s. Many of his stories, including Double Indemnity (1943), have been made into successful films. Joan Crawford won an Academy Award in 1945 for her portrayal of Cain's Mildred Pierce (1941). Cain's first novel, The Postman Always Rings Twice (1934), was said to have inspired Albert Camus' The Stranger, but offended sensibilities in the U.S. and was even tried for obscenity in Boston. The novel was eventually made into a movie in 1946, starring Lana Turner and again in 1981, with Jack Nicholson and Jessica Lange. In all, Cain authored eighteen books.

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