3 Star rating
Engaged in Murder
A Perfect Proposals Mystery, Book #1
By Nancy J. Parra
ISBN#  9780425270356
Author’s Website:  www.nancyjparra.com

Brought to you by OBS reviewer JoAnne


Event planner Pepper Pomeroy is making the most of her current unemployment by arranging a surprise for her sister, Felicity. Warren, Felicity’s boyfriend, plans to lure his lovely lady into a private jet, propose, and whisk her away on a romantic vacation. He just needs Pepper to handle all the fine details in order to make it the perfect proposal – and it is. Everything goes so well when Warren pops the question that he suggests Pepper do this sort of thing professionally.

But before she can get her new business off the ground, there are some disturbing questions. Like who’s the dead guy Pepper finds in the ladies’ room of the jet hangar? Is it possible Felicity’s high-flying fiancé has been hiding more than the engagement ring? Pepper’s not married to the idea of having a criminal in the family, so in order to protect her sister, she takes off in pursuit of a killer…


Pepper Pomeroy has recently lost her job and is stuck in a dead-end relationship with her boyfriend Bobby. So when Warren, her sister Felicity’s boyfriend, asks her to plan the perfect proposal, (and carte blanche as to cost) Pepper agrees. However, while preparing everything abroard the little plane, she uses the restroom in the hangar and sees a man in there, someone she assumes is drunk. Figuring that she’ll call the police about it after the proposal, she waits until everything is a done deal and Warren and her sister take off.

However, when she enters the restroom again, the guy hasn’t moved…and his lips are turning blue. So she calls the police in a panic, reporting a dead body. With the cops wanting to know why she didn’t report it earlier, and generally everyone around her suspicious, she finds out Warren is the most likely suspect and sets out to prove him innocent.

Oh, this book had many possibilities – but a lot of them weren’t made clear. First, Pepper is in a dead-end relationship with her boyfriend, whom she has dated supposedly since high school (or I got the distinct impression from what was said that they started dating in high school). So she’s been dating him for eight years – but she’s thirty. You do the math. And the facts that the police think she’s a suspect? She has never been to that airport before, doesn’t know anyone there, yet she might be the killer of an employee she doesn’t know or has no connections to? The fact she was even considered seemed ludicrous. She considers herself smart, yet she acts before she thinks, and some of her actions just aren’t suited to an intelligent person. Plus, all the outfits anyone wears (or nearly so) seemed to be blue. If not the outfits, their accessories (like ties) were blue or had blue in them. This girl needs to figure out there are other colors that are out there.

But the mystery itself was good. There were people that could have – and should have – been suspects. But it appeared Pepper was the only one who considered them so. Yet when the killer was revealed, (I had already figured it out a chapter earlier because it was the only one that made sense), well, that’s the truth. After everything was said and done, it made sense, although it seemed kind of extreme to me.

Not a bad cozy for the first of a series, and I have read others that started off the series so-so and improved as they went along. Let’s hope this is one of them.