Sophie Katz has just offered a man $12,000 for his services… Is she desperate or just meshugeneh?
Considering the kind of disasters that usually befall the half-black, half-Jewish mystery writer, probably both. Because the last time Sophie saw sexy P.I. Anatoly Darinsky, he practically danced a jig when she waved goodbye &151; a normal reaction for a man who'd nearly bought the farm trying to protect her from her own foolishness. What are the chances he'd agree to take incriminating pictures of her sister's philandering husband? Or that he'd let her tag along &151; you know…for research?
But when her brother-in-law turns up dead and her sister becomes the prime suspect, Sophie's priority is finding the real killer. With or without Anatoly's help. Her brother-in-law's secret life yields plenty of suspects, but the San Francisco police aren't taking any of them seriously. So Sophie does what comes naturally to her: she stirs up trouble (to lure the killer out, of course).
But if her crazy plan works, will Anatoly be there to protect her this time?
Following hard on the red spike heels of 2005's Sex, Murder and a Double Latte, Davis's second whodunit delivers on the promise of the first. Mystery novelist Sophie Katz has a knack for collecting real-life murders. The latest victim is her detestable brother-in-law, Bob Miller, with her sister, Leah, the prime suspect. Bob's sister further muddies the waters with accusations that Leah, the perfect Republican society wife, is playing up her black and Jewish heritage for sympathy in the press. Meanwhile, Sophie and Anatoly, her favorite love-to-hate PI, are investigating Bob's three mistresses and extravagant spending habits as well as their own budding relationship. A cast of charming caricatures the Jewish mom, the gay hairdresser, the destructive toddler round out a version of San Francisco in which racial politics are fun to play with and sex is steamier than frothed milk. Davis chooses style over substance, skillfully keeping the snappy dialogue funny all the way to the unsurprising surprise ending, and lands square on target for her chick lit audience.