This is your introduction to the unlikely genre of “charitable sector murder mystery novels”. Who knew so many people faced the risk of being murdered at a fundraising gala?
If you work at a charity, and after reading this, you’re thinking, “It’s bad enough I have to sell raffle tickets … Now I have to worry about being murdered to death.” Don’t worry.
I’ve included helpful survival hints in this list of the worst ways to die for a good cause.
#4 Suspicious Heart Attack
Book: Fundraising the Dead
Method of Murder: “Nell loves her job at The Society for the Preservation of Pennsylvania Antiques where she works as the Head of Development. On the day of the year’s biggest gala, a board member comes to her irate that some materials donated from her family turn up missing.
She questions Alfred, the cataloger. He mentions that he can’t find several items and promises to give Nell a list. The party goes off without a hitch. Nell comes into the society the next day and discovers Alfred’s body.”
Risk to you: Negligible. The best way to protect yourself here is to never discover anything alarming related to your donors.
#3 Throat slashed
Book: Charity Kills
Method of Murder: “A young woman is found with her throat slashed on the grounds of the biggest charity event in Texas.
Detective David Storm, a defeated cop slowly deteriorating in place as he awaits his pending retirement, is assigned to lead the investigation. Armed with only his friends, detective Storm relentlessly digs for answers, all the while fighting the obstructions of City Hall, the charity officials, and even his own department, only to find that there’s a pattern of multiple slayings—a series of crimes more sinister than ever imagined.”
Risk to you: Unlikely. Who has time to “wander the grounds” when you have to cash out a silent auction?
Book: Murder in the Abstract
Method of Murder: “Shea’s debut mystery stars Danielle (“Dani”) O’Rourke, a fund-raiser for the fictional Devor Museum in San Francisco.
The novel begins with tragedy at a gala museum event—an upcoming artist plunges to his death from a museum office window.
Things don’t look good for Dani when it is revealed that it was her office and that this was clearly murder and not suicide.”
Risk to you: Significant (there are windows everywhere)!!!!
Book: The Bone Vault
Method of Murder: “In the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s exquisite Temple of Dendur, a monument to an ancient world, a very modern debate is raging at a gala dinner: a controversial new exhibit is fiercely opposed by many among the upper echelon of museum donors.
Alex Cooper steps into this highly charged ring of power players only to make a much more troubling discovery: a young museum researcher has been murdered, her body shipped to the Met in an ancient Egyptian sarcophagus.”
Risk to you: Highly improbable, unless you’re a member of Young Patrons’ Circle.