Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Review: Tressed to Kill by Lila Dare

St. Elizabeth, Georgia, offers charm, Southern hospitality and, most recently, murder. When hairdresser Grace Terhune and her mother, Violetta, gussy up all the high-society ladies attending the town meeting, they find their snobbiest client dead. The police believe the mother-daughter duo did her in. But before things get snarled beyond repair, Grace sets out to clear their names.

There's something about a beauty parlor.  Maybe they're like this all over the country but here, in the south, beauty parlors are a mecca for women and gossip.  You know the ladies I mean, those who get their hair "done" once a week on Friday mornings, like my grandmother, who spend half their day underneath a hair dryer but can still hear and read lips like nobody's business. 

Grace Terhune has stepped in it, and she's drowning.  It starts with a murder -- that's how it always starts, people -- of someone who's not so nice but has a lot of clout in the small town of St. Elizabeth.  Because Grace and her mother Violetta find the body and have the most to gain, thanks to the murder, they're prime suspects, at least Violetta is.  And any good daughter isn't going to let her innocent mother take the wrap for a crime she didn't commit, so Grace and the ladies of Violetta's decide to go Nancy Drew to clear Violetta's name.

Hijinks ensue. So does any the name of any amateur sleuth.  Regardless, it's a well-written mystery, with twists and turns -- one I should have seen coming but didn't.

I am curious, given the romantic sparks between Grace and Special Agent "Marshal" Dillon, how Grace could be involved in another murder mystery that would warrant (ha!) his attention. Or reporter Marty Shears, for that matter.  How much murder can one small town have? I'm waiting to find out. 

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