First book in this series and it was full of surprises. I love that! Kate Austen is unwittingly drawn into the investigation of the murder of her neighbor whom she didn't know all that well. She learns a lot of dark secrets about the town's citizens that may lead to her being the next victim! Good read.
A cute first mystery with some totally unexpected plot twists and quirky minor characters that I hope remain in the series. This was a quick read (one day) but no less satisfying for that and I look forward to more of Kate Austen.
Interesting story. Kept me guessing to the very end.
Kate Austen is a woman not of affluence but is living in an affluent neighborhood. She has a five year old daughter whom she adores, a baby on the way, a husband who has gone off to Europe to "find himself" because he doesn't feel the secure life Kate desires is for him, and concern about how she is going to pay the mortgage. Kate is sure the wealthy elite of the neighborhood have life easy until her next door neighbor is found murdered, and Kate finds herself inadvertently pulled into the investigation.
The author of this book has done a great job of keeping the story fairly logical. Kate's emotions throughout the book are true to life even with the onset of a romance despite the fact she still has a husband. (Kate had realized with his leaving that her husband was not the only one in the marriage who had become disenchanted.)
This is the first book I have read by this author. I hope the next book of the series is done as well as this one.
I really enjoyed this book and this author; it is the first one I've read by her. I'm going to read all of her books.
It is not bloody or creepy or explicit in gory detail. It was a pleasure to read and held my interest thru-out. Several authors are really beginning to leave me feeling awful and with nightmares after I read them. I like my murders with a little less detail, and I found this one a pleasure.
From Publishers Weekly: "This entertaining debut introduces Kate Austen, a resilient young northern California mom. When her husband sets off to "find himself" in Europe, Kate is pregnant and jobless, and their daughter is only five. Then her next-door neighbor is murdered. Kate doubts that the killer was an intruder-nothing of value was stolen, and it wasn't like the orderly Pepper Livingston to have left a window open. Along with her acerbic best friend, Kate begins to look at her neighbors in a new light, especially Pepper's cool husband, Robert. Searching through Pepper's things at the request of nearly divorced homicide Lt. Michael Stone, Kate finds a matchbook in an old purse of Pepper's and a hidden diaphragm; she is also shown an earring the police have found in the hallway. Later, after she and Michael have become more intimate, she uses these clues to come up with the culprit and motive. Jacobs tops off this slice of suburban life off with a dollop of romance and a twist of suspense.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews: "When quintessential California socialite Pepper Livingston takes time off from her breakneck schedule (Sunshine House, the Save Our Hills Coalition, etc.) to get strangled, the news causes scarcely a ripple among her neighbors in trendy Walnut Hills. Despite Kate Austen's demure protests to the contrary, life goes on as placidly as before. The officer who first questions Kate seems less interested in Pepper's murder than in Kate's thriving ficus; the grieving widower brings his daughter over to Kate's house to play and reminisce comfortably about Pepper over a couple of quiet scotches; the undifferentiated gossips at the Guild Wine Festival trade the most innocuous rumors about alternatives to the official drug-related robbery theory. The only excitement comes when Kate, abandoned by a flighty husband who's taken off for Europe in hopes of finding himself, falls for Michael Stone, the hard-bunned homicide lieutenant in charge of the case. Even in the throes of suburban passion, though, newcomer Kate still chooses dresses and makeup as carefully as ever, and she manages to spot the murderer without seriously disrupting her day care arrangements. A West Coast Compromising Positions, with omelettes, Chardonnay, and mild innuendo substituting for detection, and nary a mean bone in its well-preserved body. -- Copyright ©1994, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.