Monday, November 3, 2014

Shadow of Doubt (A Carol Childs Mystery Book #1)

Author:  Nancy Cole Silverman
Genre:  Mystery/Suspense

Four Stars
When a top Hollywood agent is found poisoned in the bathtub of her home suspicion quickly turns to one of her two nieces. But Carol Childs, a reporter for a local talk radio station doesn’t believe it. The suspect is her neighbor and friend, and also her primary source for insider industry news. When a media frenzy pits one niece against the other—and the body count starts to rise—Carol knows she must save her friend from being tried in courts of public opinion.
But even the most seasoned reporter can be surprised, and when a Hollywood psychic shows up in Carol’s studio one night and warns her there will be more deaths, things take an unexpected turn. Suddenly nobody is above suspicion. Carol must challenge both her friendship and the facts, and the only thing she knows for certain is the killer is still out there and the closer she gets to the truth, the more danger she’s in.

Pepper Millhouse is a Hollywood agent who is known and hated by all.  The only things she thinks of is making money and making life miserable for those around her.  So when she is found dead in the bathroom of her home, everyone is sure she has been murdered...and they're right.
Carol Childs works for a radio station as a news reporter.  She lives next door to Samantha, Pepper's niece and heir.  They have become friends since Sam moved in, and when Sam is soon arrested for Pepper's murder, Carol is convinced she didn't do it and is being set up by someone.
Before her arrest, things escalate when Sam asks Carol if she will lend moral support to her during the reading of the will.  Stunned to discover Sam has a twin sister, Sarah, she is even more stunned to realize Sarah hates Sam and is convinced she killed Pepper for control of the agency and its clients. 
But soon more bodies start piling up, murdered in the exact manner that killed Pepper, and to further complicate matters, Carol's boyfriend Eric is the FBI agent assigned to lead the case.  Add in the mix a young star named Amber that Carol is sure is involved somehow; Misty Dawn, a psychic for the FBI who is also employed by the talent agency and Carol thinks committed the murders; and Carol's own son Charlie, who is infatuated with Amber.
It all leads to a very nice mystery with a little suspense thrown in.  Ms. Silverman has given us a thoughtful tale in which things are not what they seem, and anyone involved could be the murderer.  The only reason I gave it four stars instead of five is because I was not completely satisfied with the ending.  Please don't get me wrong - we do get a resolution and find out the murderer; I just felt that I would have liked to have known the reactions of those involved when Carol finally put it all together (you have to read the book to understand why I feel the way I do.)  Recommended.

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A Souffle of Suspicion (A French Bistro Mystery #2)

Author:  Daryl Wood Gerber Genre:  Mystery Hardcover; Digital Book ISBN #:  9781683315865 Crooked Lane Books 325 Pages $25.25; $9.99 ...