by Cynthia Chow
This week in honor of Earth Day we are primarily featuring ebooks. Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win an ebook copy of Fashionably Late, and a link to purchase it from Amazon.
A fashion show turns deadly in this latest mystery featuring the delightful detecting duo of Summer Smythe and Dorothy Westin. Summer Smythe-Sloan may only be twenty-six (okay, twenty-nine) years old, but the youngest resident of Milano, Florida’s Hibiscus Pointe senior living community is allowed to reside there due to her volunteer position as their Aquatics Director. Summer also makes it her duty to drag Dorothy into a much-younger lifestyle, although Summer promises that they will both love the Women’s League Christmas on the Catwalk Lunch and Fashion Show. Summer’s friend Esme is a fashion institute student interning at the show, a presentation of models of all ages donning local boutique store and jewelry designs. Their luncheon is interrupted by a senior model who approaches Dorothy and Summer with concerns about her mother, a new resident at the Hibiscus memory care unit. The note Angelica Downs drops asking for help is alarming, but not as shocking as the discovery of her body in a garment bag.
A missing bracelet has the jewelry designer making accusations against Esme, causing Summer and Dorothy to once again delve into an investigation in order to prove the young woman’s innocence. That involves not only a little undercover work within Hibiscus Glen, but participating in the next fashion show that is making up prematurely interrupted holiday event. The nerves Summer experiences in anticipation of donning a rather horrific couture design pales in comparison to having a real date with Detective Shane Donovan, since their previous attempts always seem to end prematurely with a police emergency.
Told from alternating viewpoints of both Summer and Dorothy, this third in the series always entertains with the humorous interactions between these genuinely likable characters. The daughter of a famous movie producer, Summer has shown considerable growth as the friendships she’s made within the community allow her to mature and accept more responsibility in her life. The residents of Milano are indeed the highlight of this series, as they seem to be so distinctly unique to Southwest Florida. Everyone adores Juliette-Margot, a forty-year-old Parisian in the body of a six-year-old, and Summer finds herself enjoying caring for the girl as much as serving as her role model. Dorothy is a refreshing senior who defies stereotypes by being neither too “spunky” nor too set in her ways. Her own tentative romantic relationship is fraught with complications and tinged with sadness, although Dorothy never loses her optimism. Few will unravel the mystery of fashion, reality television celebrities, and greed, but all will thoroughly enjoy this lively, exuberant novel of a Floridian Christmas.
To enter to win an ebook copy of Fashionably Late, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “late,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen April 21, 2018. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address, and if via comment please include your email address.
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