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The Clairvoyant Countess
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The Clairvoyant Countess
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In The Clairvoyant Countess, the bestselling author of the beloved Mrs. Pollifax series gives us the mysterious Madame Karitska, who can see things no one else can—including murder.Madame...
In The Clairvoyant Countess, the bestselling author of the beloved Mrs. Pollifax series gives us the mysterious Madame Karitska, who can see things no one else can—including murder.Madame...
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  • In The Clairvoyant Countess, the bestselling author of the beloved Mrs. Pollifax series gives us the mysterious Madame Karitska, who can see things no one else can—including murder.

    Madame Karitska has a style all her own—a rare blend of psychic power, an exotic past, and an uncanny gift for common sense. But when a chance encounter with Detective-Lieutenant Pruden of the Police Department catapults her into the midst of a seamier side of life, she must use all her resources to keep danger at bay.

    “Dorothy Gilman is one of those authors that we would like to lock in a tower and command to produce a novel at least every three months. To get a new one is to become ecstatic, to finish it is to grieve, and to wait for the next one is torment!”—Chattanooga Times

Excerpts-

  • Chapter One The sign in the window of the shabby brownstone building said simply Madame Karitska, Readings.

    Actually Marina Karitska was a countess but this was of small regard to her and certainly she had never been a run-of-the-mill countess. She was first of all clairvoyant and, secondly, she had spent her childhood years in the Far East as a beggar; it had been her first occupation. During the intervening years she had become fabulously rich in Budapest, had lost her wealth in Antwerp, and was extremely poor in America but she had a saying, born of experience, that only the eternal things mattered.

    Among clairvoyants it is common knowledge that to use such a gift for personal profit is to invite loss of the sixth sense. In all the years of her eventful life Madame Karitska had never accepted money for her readings, but some months ago—eking out a living as a milliner in Trafton—she had begun to have a series of dreams, all of them alike night after night. In these dreams she was walking along a street that was foreign to her, and inevitably she would come to a particular brownstone house and observe in the first-floor window a sign that read Madame Karitska, Readings. The brownstone was one of many on a shabby street, indistinguishable from the others except for the fact that its front door was painted a bright canary yellow.

    After experiencing this dream for a number of consecutive nights Madame Karitska found herself—seemingly by chance—going out of her way on a Sunday stroll. And suddenly she discovered herself standing and staring at a particular brownstone house in a long row of such houses, all of them identical except that this one had a bright yellow door. In the window to the left of the door hung a sign: APARTMENT FOR RENT.

    Because this sort of thing had happened to her a few times before in her life Madame Karitska knew that her life was about to change again. She walked up the steps and tugged at an old-fashioned push-bell. A young man with a beard and a ring in one ear answered her summons. There were daubs of yellow and green paint across his jeans, and a freckle of alizarin crimson on the bridge of his nose. He was clearly astonished. "I only hung that sign in the window five minutes ago," he told her accusingly.

    "Yes," she said. "May I see the apartment?"

    There were two rooms, quite small but filled with light and ample enough of her hundreds of books, and there was a closet of a kitchen as well. It could all be rented for a sum less than what she paid for one room on the mediocre hotel in which she stayed.

    "Of course the neighborhood's pretty lousy," the young man told her, for Marina Karitska continued to look like a countess through all the exigencies of life.

    "In what way?" she asked with interest.

    "It's a slum," he pointed out. "Mostly artists' lofts and lodgings."

    "But quite safe for clients?"

    "Clients?" he said in a startled voice.
    "I shall be giving readings."

    He looked relieved. "Oh—Christian Science. Yeah, the neighborhood's safe enough. The police station's just around the corner, you know. Down at the west end there's a lot of junkies but that's six blocks away. It's a straight neighborhood, just poor."

    "Good—so am I," she told him crisply, and moved in two days later."


    "And now we shall see," mused Madame Karitska when she had abandoned her milliner's job, scavenged lumber for bookcases, and unpacked her books. Her purse was flat but her serenity untouched. She had, after all, been much...

About the Author-

  • Dorothy Gilman (1923–2012) was the author of 14 Mrs. Pollifax novels, including The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax, the series debut; Mrs. Pollifax Pursued; Mrs. Pollifax and the Lion Killer; Mrs. Pollifax, Innocent Tourist; and Mrs. Pollifax Unveiled. She was also the author of many other novels, among them Thale’s Folly.

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    Random House Publishing Group
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