An older woman sits on her front steps of an early morning, enjoying the day. Oh, wait! She is NOT enjoying the day. She is dead and her faces is all purple and bloated and disgusting because there is duct tape across her mouth and nose. Whoa! Something like that will surely mess up your day big time, no doubt about it.
Detective Kevin Fowler, in the small upscale town of Hubbard is on the scene along with his crew. And they are totally stumped. Who would want to kill Edie Mae? OK, she was a gossip and a little too much up in everybody’s business, but essentially harmless. Right?
While investigating the scene inside the house, Detective Fowler comes upon an attractive woman rummaging around. What the hey? Why is she inside a taped-off crime scene? But, instead of kicking her butt out, and threatening arrest for contaminating a crime scene, (and see, here is where attractive people get passes that unattractive people don”t), he falls in love with her.
From here on, the book is a dichotomy of romance novel and police procedural mystery, which I can’t decide is annoying or interesting. I guess my personal preference is to take my police procedurals neat, without a lot of romance diluting the quaff. If I want a heavy dose of romance, I’ll read a romance novel. If I want a decent detective story, I’ll pick something in that category. I don’t mind a bit of the lovey-dovey, but prefer the emphasis on the detecting, not on the smooching.
But that is just me, I’m a curmudgeon of a certain age, and you know how we get set in our ways. (Hey, you kids! Get off my lawn!) In fact, it was a really good mystery, AND a really good sweet romance, appealing to us cozy mystery/romance readers on both sides of the aisle.
So for the romance angle, well, that works out just fine. And as for the mystery? Oh, dearie, let me tell you — there was ANOTHER murder of a woman of a certain age, a friend of the first gal, using the same m.o. OK, things is gettin’ real, now, bro.
We get to see the murderer inside his head, but we are not sure exactly who he is, and it only gradually becomes clear why he is knocking off the old broads. But as always, you will have to read the book to get the full story. Why should I ruin that pleasure for you?
All in all, a fine specimen of its genre. And would I read more from this author? Well, of course! I’m not THAT big a crab.