A Material Witness Mystery #3
Author: Diane Vallere
Author website: http://www.dianevallere.com
Brought to you by OBS reviewer Kayt
Fabric shop owner Polyester Monroe can get tangled up in textiles, but it’s murder that really throws her for a loop in the latest mystery from the national bestselling author of Crushed Velvet.
The time has come for San Ladrón, California’s annual Miss Tangorli beauty pageant, and Poly has agreed to use Material Girl’s inventory of shimmery silks to create embellished gowns fit for a crown. But when millionaire Harvey Halliwell—the man who revived the city’s citrus trade with his imported tangorli tree—is found dead days before the pageant contestants are announced, something sour takes over the town.
To make matters worse, her friend, mechanic Charlie Brooks, is soon caught up in the crime, having been seen in the company of the case’s prime suspect. Now Poly’s on a mission to squeeze out the truth. But as she searches for a pattern, the killer seems intent on cutting up the evidence.
I really enjoy this series (A Material Witness Mystery) and would love to be friends with protagonist Polyester Monroe. She is caring, strong and talented. Her group of friends are wonderful as well. Silk Stalkings is the third book in this series and they just keep getting better. Things are going well for Poly (Polyester) these days. Her shop Material Girl in San Ladrón, California has turned her friend Genevieve Girard’s tea shop into a stunning Parisian club. Tea Totalers has been transformed. Poly is even wearing something besides black thanks to Vaughn McMichael. Poly and Vaughn are getting along better and who knows what will come of that. Poly’s triumphant work with Tea Totalers has brought her some well-deserved attention. The Miss Tangorli pageant is being held soon and they think Poly could really help make things more of an even playing field. She is going to help design and create the gowns for the 20 finalist. This means working with Harvey Halliwell, the man responsible for the pageant.
Little did Poly know that when she saw an argument between two men at the big party, that she would become embroiled in another murder. She is sure she saw one of them men take something from the poor fellow who fell out. That poor fellow just happens to be Harvey Halliwell. Somehow he gets up and leaves, even though Poly has tried to get him medical attention. She unfortunately finds his body and the race is on to find out why he was killed and by who. In between trying to get answers, Poly is busy with the gowns (having to get her old boss and the sewers from his shop to help), trying to find out what is going on with her friend and mechanic Charlie Brooks and her sister, who is the man Charlie is seen arguing with, and boy does Poly have her hands full.
Author Diane Vallere is wonderful at getting the reader up to date on the series so this can actually be read as a standalone. You definitely do not have to read it in order, but I would suggest reading all three as they are quite enjoyable. They mystery is intriguing and kept me guessing for sure. The writing is flowing and wraps things together seamlessly. Each individual mystery (there are a few side ones), clue, side stories are woven in and out of each other effortlessly. I am not a crafty person, do not know how to sew a button on, but I even enjoyed the time spent on the design aspects of the things Poly was working on and doing.
I recommend Silk Stalkings to anyone that enjoys a well written mystery with fun and entertaining characters. I love visiting the small town San Ladrón, California and hanging out with Poly and her friends. Big city problems do come to town as well. Crafters will love the ideas shared in the dialogue. Poly is a fabulous protagonist that drew me in and kept me reading through the night. As I said before, you really do not have to have read the other books in this series to follow and enjoy this well-crafted read. Cannot wait for the next installment.