Summary: Fashionista and amateur sleuth Haley Randolph is in hot pursuit of the season’s newest must-have handbag. But soon she’s also in hot pursuit of a killer—when she discovers the corpse of none other than her designer purse party rival…
Life is beyond fabulous at the moment for Haley Randolph. She just spent two amazing weeks in Europe with her boyfriend Ty Cameron, owner of Holt’s Department Store where Haley works. And now Ty’s grandmother, Ada, is letting Haley drive her way-cool Mercedes. Things would be perfect if she could just get her hands on her latest fashion obsession: the new Sinful handbag.
Every store in town is out of stock, and Haley would rather die than buy a knockoff. But when she finds the body of her nemesis, Tiffany Markham, in the trunk of Ada’s Mercedes, she’s not so sure she wants to trade places after all…
Topping the list of suspects, Haley doesn’t deny seeing red when Tiffany and her business partner not only stole her purse party idea, but also made more money. But Haley wasn’t jealous enough to commit murder. Now she’ll have to solve this mystery quickly—and find that Sinful bag—before she becomes a killer’s next fashion fatality… -- Kensington
In my pre-blogging days, I read quite a few mystery books. I can't say that I read a lot of them anymore, but I have to admit that every once in awhile, I really enjoy sitting down with a light, fun mystery book. SHOULDER BAGS AND SHOOTINGS by Dorothy Howell definitely fit the bill!
SHOULDER BAGS AND SHOOTINGS is a very quick, yet very fun, book. The book is written in the first person voice of Haley, a woman who is absolutely obsessed with handbags. She is irresponsible and very shallow (and she might get on some people's nerves), but I found her to be entertaining. She hates to work, loves to shop and especially enjoys buying purses; however, she also has a knack for finding dead bodies and wanting to solve the mystery.
There were quite a few times when I was reading SHOULDER BAGS AND SHOOTINGS that I found myself laughing at Haley's completely self-absorbed behavior. I especially thought it was cute when Haley would be working on solving the crime and get completely distracted with finding a new purse. One thing's for sure -- if you are like me and love handbags, then you will definitely appreciate certain aspects of Haley's personality!
As memorable as Haley was as an amateur detective, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the mystery part of this story. I thought the author did a good job of creating the crime as well as teasing the reader, although I have to say that I usually don't spend a lot of time trying to solve the mystery in a book like this one.
SHOULDER BAGS AND SHOOTINGS is actually the third book in the Haley Randolph Mystery series. Usually, I like to read series' books in order, but I will make an exception for cozy mysteries. I think SHOULDER BAGS AND SHOOTINGS stands on its own, but I wouldn't mind reading the first two books and learning more about Haley's purse obsession and crime-solving adventures.
I actually read SHOULD BAGS AND SHOOTINGS one afternoon at the swimming pool, and it was an ideal read. (Plus, the cover is so adorable that I caught a few women checking it out!) It was light and funny and I definitely recommend it for fans of chick lit and/or mystery books.
Thanks to FSB Associates for sending me a copy of this book.