Leading an Elegant Death by Paula Carter


I had never heard of this series before, but I saw it in my local used bookshop and decided to give it a try.  The book’s theme revolves around one of the now myriad home styling/cooking/gardening/entertaining experts and TV personalities, a la Martha Stewart.

The TV personality, Hillary, is not the main sleuth. Her new executive assistant, Jane Ferguson, law school dropout, divorcee with a child, is the primary investigator.   Hillary’s character is kind of a silly flake, but it seems like it might be an act.  A persona she has adopted to go along with her TV identity because when push comes to shove she takes action and is decisive.  In the beginning of the book Jane came across like a victim, but by the end she seemed much more capable.

The mystery was well done with clues dotted across the landscape and Jane as a sleuth actually doing investigating, not just stumbling across them.  This was a light, quick cozy with a definite southern accent and I will read the others if I come across them. Fans of the Southern Sisters Mysteries might enjoy it.