By: Ellery Adams
Publication Date: June 2010
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: June 2010
If Olivia Limoges were an ice cream sundae, she’d be made of three scoops of bossy drizzled with a coating of panache and a sprinkling of nuts. She was in no mood whatsoever to put up with Darlene and Sue Ellen’s flapping jaws in the Oyster Bay Stop ‘n’ Shop and when she plopped a bag of Iams dog food on Sue Ellen's chips and posies, they knew she meant business. They could say anything about her, including the fact that she was the richest woman in town, but she had no intention of being the gossip special of the week. Not very likely. Her dog Captain Haviland, a black standard poodle, was her constant companion and she was soon out the door and sitting in her Range Rover with him.
She rolled into a handicapped parking spot in front of Grumpy’s Diner to relax and do a little reading. Olivia needed a bit of sympathy from her best friend Dixie, who was all of “four feet seven inches tall, including the two inches provided by a pair of roller skates and an inch of comb-teased, sun-streaked brown hair.” The last thing she expected was a bunch of yappers reading from their manuscripts . . . “His eyes lingered on the heaving swell of her breasts.” That did it. A few wry comments later and she found herself on the receiving end of an invite to the Bayside Book Writers club. Why not? After all she was writing a book.
She dusted off her protagonist, “Kamila,” and began to enjoy the motley members of the club, including Camden Ford, a.k.a. Milano Cruise, a big time gossip columnist. Little did they know that his body would soon be found in an alleyway “slumped against the brick wall like a discarded department store mannequin.” A strange Haiku had been left with the body, a clue for the literati to solve.
Chief Sawyer Rawlings stepped in to take their statements, but soon there would be another body and another literary conundrum to solve. A cemetery, a land deal, a movie star, a rock band named Blackwaters, a gossip columnist . . . how did they all tie in? Olivia walked the beach to think about it, but found a clue lying in the sand she never wanted to find. She reached out to touch some curly black fur only to find yet another piece of paper. HAVILAND! What was going on? This was a real emergency and the Bayside Book Writers had been called to action, but just how were they going to find this killer?
This exciting new, killer of a series with the Bayside Book Writers club is going to garner a LOT of fans. I loved the assortment of characters in this cozy who range from the small town quirky waitress to the more sophisticated and suave literary aficionado. A little splash of Chivas Regal anyone? The pace was relaxed, but the writing was not at all shallow. This is the type of book that you’re going to be carting around with you, just hoping for a few minutes to read the next chapter. It’s one of those “don’t bug me, I’m reading” books you’re going to savor from the first page to the last. The ending was well paced, unrushed and made me anxious to read the next in the series.
Quill says: If you love Murder She Wrote, you’re going to love this one because Jessica Fletcher...er, Olivia Limoges has now gone south!