Saturday, August 15, 2015

Cozy Mystery Review: Suede to Rest (A Material Witness Mystery, Book 1) by Diane Vallere

(Photo credit:

Book Details:

Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Berkley (November 4, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0425270572
ISBN-13: 978-0425270578

About the Book:

With her career as a dress designer in shreds, Polyester Monroe is looking forward to a fresh start...

When Poly Monroe was little, she loved playing in her family's textile store.  But after a fatal family tragedy, Land of a Thousand Fabrics was boarded up and Poly never expected to see the inside again.  Now, as inheritor of the long-shuttered shop, she's ready to restore the family business.  However, her two new kittens, Pins and Needles, aren't the only ones causing a snag in her plans...

Not everyone wants Poly back in San Ladron, especially a powerful local developer pressuring her to sell--and leave town fast.  Even when the threats turn deadly, she's not read to bolt.  Because Poly is beginning to suspect that a murder behind the shop is tied to a mystery in her family's unsettled past that she's determined to solve...before her own life is left hanging by a thread.
(Courtesy of the back cover of the mass market paperback.

My Review:

An L.A. girl now, Poly goes back to the town of her youth when her great uncle passes away and leaves the family store to her.  She's not in town very long when odd things begin happening.  She's pressured to sign over the store and sell it, her car is vandalized, and she is rudely approached by someone who claims to be the owner's son.  As if that wasn't bad enough, she has the cops called on her, her life is threatened (more than once), and she thinks she's being set up by the family members of the big time investor in town.

When an elderly man from the Senior Patrol is found dead behind her newly acquired shop, Poly is convinced that his murder and the murder of her great aunt 10 years prior are somehow connected to each other.  Poly is also convinced that both murders are somehow tied to the malicious events that keep happening to her since stepping foot back into town.  Not knowing where to turn or who she can trust, Poly is quick to identify everyone as the enemy, including her boyfriend, Carson, who orchestrates some shenanigans all his own.

Throughout the book, the reader will think they've figured out who was involved in the murders only to have the suspect or suspects cleared of any wrong doing.  You will go on a wild ride trying to figure out who the bad guy(s)/gal(s) are and who are innocent.  I loved the twists and turns this cozy mystery takes you on as you try to figure out who was involved and why they committed such horrible acts.

Suede to Rest is a great first book in a brand new cozy mystery series.  I really enjoyed Poly as a main character.  Even though she finds herself embroiled in a long ago murder mystery and plays amateur sleuth, Poly is so believable and realistically written.  She's in the industry she loves but knows that there is something missing.  Being left the textile store by her uncle proves to be what something was.  She has dreams, goals, aspiration just like you and me.

The secondary characters that Poly meets along the way aren't all suspicious.  She quickly learns who is willing to help her whether it's repairing her car or repairing vandalism.  I can't wait to see what happens in the town of San Ladron with Poly and the rest of her new found friends in future books.

Review copy courtesy of my local library.

My Rating:

No comments: