Jaine Austen lives a lifestyle that involves working with the rich, super thin, health conscience and fashion forward people of which she is far from being a part of because she has mounts of bills to pay, deal with her demanding cat Prozac and her appetite for junk food and nasty cat food along with long distant emails about their zany adventures, and suffers from thick thighs, an addiction to food and the comfort of her elastic waist pants. With a life like hers, it is easy to fall prey to some of the worst employers now including Joy Amoroso, who is the matchmaker for "Dates of Joy" and must endure this hell on heels diva, if she plans on paying the bills. While Jaine is on the nightmare of a date, her neighbor Lance is off being romanced by a man, who is rich and full of marriage material from Joy's selection of dates.
Click here to see the rest of this review
After many encounters with an angry customer and her staff, she ends up murdered at her own party by the chocolates she is so obsessed with eating in front of those around her. Jaine has become a suspect on the list of possible suspects including Joy's boyfriend Tonio that Joyce threatened to send to jail, Alyce the angry customer of which she was seen fighting with her at the party, or maybe her two employees Cassie and Travis that she treated poorly. Other suspects that were at the party were current clients as the gorgeous artist, Greg Stanton, Skip Holmeiser III, and Barry the newest member. Another suspect comes into play, which is her Aunt Faith that gives a speech of how horrible Joy was to her and her own mother. Jaine becomes a suspect after being seen in Joy's office trying to erase an email which included her nasty brochure she never intended to send to Joy.
With all of these suspects, Jaine is off questioning each of these possible suspects. She learns that Greg was a color blind painter that sold his uncle's paintings, which Joy was blackmailing to be a client in exchange for her silence. Cassie's mother was a former client who lost it all and she was working with Joy to potentially get revenge for her mother. Alyce was a diabetic and had the needles to inject poison into the chocolate after hearing the fight and threatened her at the party. It is discovered that Tonio had stolen jewelry from Joy and she was threatening to send him to jail. Travis had disappeared from the party and could have potentially murdered Joy to get rid of her, so he could open up a nicer matchmaking service using Joy's fake clients. Aunt Faith was found to inherit all of Joy's wealth and get revenge for her taking the family matchmaking business from her.
Meanwhile, she is being chased by a love crazy Skip. She is trying to keep things together but along the way she is consistently being bribed with food from Skip. He becomes obsessed with Prozac giving her a diamond collar of which Jaine decides to return it but not before Prozac hides it. Jaine is now trying to find this collar. In the midst of it all, she gets a job to write a profile for the police officer who interviewed her. Then, her parents have been emailing her about their Valentine's Day mayhem. Her dad causing trouble with her mom's best friend Lydia and her brother Lester. He becomes obsessed with Lester because he thinks Lester has a crush on his wife. Jaine's dad overacts to everything and makes a fool of himself after discovering Lester had a crush on other woman. Just when the was over Jaine's mom misplaces her ring given to her for Valentine's day and her dad makes a scene over it by blaming Lydia and Lester. Soon after, they have figured out that Jaine's mom left it in one of her pockets.
Finally, once Jaine gets all the information from all of her possible suspects, she hasn't figured out who the murderer is until she meets with Skip to question him. She then faces the murderer. At that moment, she is threatened with the same syringe and must fight for her life. The murderer is caught and she comes home to an unusual male admirer.
Best part of story, including ending:
I like the investigating that happens with this story. The clues the characters comes across is creative and has made it difficult to guess who the murderer is. The author writes with humor and interesting characters and fun.
Best scene in story:
The favorite scene occurs when Jaine is up in a tree trying to spy on another character. Suddenly, she comes across the angry squirrels, who are convinced Jaine is trying to get into their food supply. They become aggressive by bearing their sharp teeth and attaching themselves to her pants. Jaine figures out she cannot take on the pair, so she gives up her pants. When she goes to her car, she realizes that her keys are in the pants leaving round two with the angry squirrels. Luckily for her she succeeds with retrieving the keys, but the pants are a lost cause leaving her running around in her undies.
Opinion about the main character:
Jaine is not perfect but she is spunky and doesn't care what those around her think of her. I don't like how she never seems to keep a romance with any one character in any of this series.