Wednesday, April 5, 2017

An Academic Mystery

In The Art of Vanishing by Cynthia Kuhn, Lila Maclean has survived her first semester as a college professor at Stoneham University in Colorado. Hoping for a less stressful conclusion to the school year, she plans to avoid direct contact with the chancellor. Unfortunately that is not to be. 

An arrogant, obnoxious author has been scheduled to appear at Stoneham, and she is "voluntold" to go to a reading in Denver by fabled author Damon Von Tussel to interview him. She tries to see the author before his talk, but is thwarted by security.  After the talk, the author disappears and no one knows where he is. 

Worried that he will pull the same disappearing act on them, Lila is tasked with making sure he appears at the event. With arrangements made and a marketing blizzard promoting the event, everyone is on edge that the great Von Tussel will not appear. 

But turn up he does with his long-lost daughter and her fiance in tow. Thanks to Lila's mother, renowned artist Violet O and former romantic interest of the author, Von Tussel seems willing to cooperate. Things don't work out as expected and Lila uses her artistic, avant-garde mother to save the day. 

After several accidents and an attempt on his life Von Tussel's appearance is again thrown into doubt. The plot bobs and weaves in several directions to a surprising ending. 

The Art of Vanishing is a good follow up to the first book in the series The Semester of Our Discontent.

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