Monday, October 3, 2016

Blog Tour Review & #Giveaway ~ Masking for Trouble by Diane Vallere

Masking for Trouble
by Diane Vallere

Book Details:

Masking for Trouble (A Costume Shop Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Berkley (October 4, 2016)
ISBN-13: 978-0425278291

About the Book:

Halloween brings more tricks than treats for costume shop owner Margo Tamblyn in the second in a new cozy series from the national bestselling author of the Material Witness Mysteries.

Halloween conjures up big business for Margo Tamblyn’s costume shop, Disguise DeLimit, but this year, the holiday comes knocking with serious trouble. Venture capitalist Paul Haverford plans to rezone historic downtown into a glitzy commercial area which would push out local business. Margo is set on saving her family’s store, especially after a nasty run-in with the chain-store tycoon, but after Haverford’s body is discovered during a spooky party at the derelict Alexandria Hotel, Margo finds herself dressed as the police’s prime suspect.

Anxious to clear her name, Margo begins hunting down anyone who might have wanted Haverford dead. Between all of his malicious maneuverings, the murdered mogul had buckets of people anxious to see him gone. Now, Margo will have to use every trick in the book to find a cloaked killer—before someone else winds up wearing a death shroud…

My Review:

From My Review of Book 1, A Disguise to Die For ~~

On the edge of Las Vegas sits the small town of Proper, Nevada. A sleepy little town, Proper doesn't have much to pull in tourists. In the heart of the town sits Disguise DeLimit Costume Shop, made famous when the residents decided that costume parties were the way to go.

Review of Book 2, Masking for Trouble ~~ 

For a costume shop and a small town that thrives on costume parties, Halloween is THE social event.   As the town prepares a week of festivities, Margo is running Desguise DeLimit while her father is travelling.  Busy is an understatement and Margo informally employs local guys from the swim team to help out.  As day one of the festivities approaches, Margo is served with paperwork from a business tycoon indicating that, legally, her shop and its costumes are not eligible for entry into this year's costume contest.  Companies not on the tycoon's payroll are being shunned from Halloween activities.

The week started off with a party in the Alexandria Hotel to kick off Halloween week. Although, technically not allowed to enter the contests, Margo and her friends attend the party anyway. When the tycoon is found dead by Margo all of Margo's actions are scrutinized and she becomes suspect number one. Now, Margo must juggle the shop, the festivities, and finding a murderer before she winds up in jail or dead, herself.

The author, just as in book 1, does an excellent job taking the reader on wild goose chases throughout the novel.  Many characters, new and familiar, are developed in ways that certainly could point toward being the murder.  The characters have the means and motives to want Haverford extinguished permanently.  With the police honed in only on Margo, she fears that she'll end up in jail while the real murderer goes free.  So, our amateur sleuth does what she must to clear her name and out the real killer.

Diane Vallere has done a wonderful job continuing the world building in the second Costume Shop Mystery.  Margo has settled back into Proper and now manages the shop.  She still uses the costumes in her family's shop to become other people but her personality shines through them all.  She is determined to successfully run the shop and clear her name, showing a strength that is admirable.  Her amateur sleuthing does cause tensions to run high. She's smart and doesn't intentionally put herself in harm's way. 

The book has depth and the plot is solid. The dialogue between the characters is fluid and the story is fast paced. The murderer(s) is hidden among a myriad of potential suspects and isn't easily figured out. I was actually a bit surprised in who the murdered ended up being.  Masking for Trouble is a fantastic 2nd book in the Costume Shop Mystery series by Diane Vallere.

ARC review copy courtesy of the publisher, at no cost, in exchange for an honest review.

My Rating:

Meet the Author:

About The Author:

I’m a former fashion buyer turned mystery writer, trading fashion accessories for accessories to murder. I was bit by the mystery bug as a kid reading Trixie Belden, Connie Blair, and The Three Investigators. Now I’m writing three series: the Style & Error Mysteries, the Mad for Mod Mysteries, and the Material Witness Mysteries.

The Costume Shop mysteries debuted with A DISGUISE TO DIE FOR, which introduces Margo Tamblyn, costume shop owner, who helps solve a murder after one of her clients is found dead at his own costume party (dressed as Sherlock!). MASKING FOR TROUBLE, the second in the series, will be out in October 2016, just in time for Halloween.

The Material Witness mysteries feature Polyester Monroe, who inherits the fabric shop where she was born. Books include SUEDE TO REST and CRUSHED VELVET . The third, SILK STALKINGS, was just released.

The Style & Error Series features former fashion buyer turned amateur sleuth Samantha Kidd. Books in that series include DESIGNER DIRTY LAUNDRY ; BUYER, BEWARE ; THE BRIM REAPER ; and SOME LIKE IT HAUTE . (A short story, “Just Kidding ,” tells the story of how Samantha first met shoe designer Nick Taylor). Book 5, GRAND THEFT RETRO, will be out in 2016.

The Madison Night Mysteries feature a modern day interior decorator who specializes in midcentury design (studying Doris Day movies to get the look right). Books are PILLOW STALK,THAT TOUCH OF INK , and WITH VICS YOU GET EGGROLL . A prequel novella, “Midnight Ice,” can be found in OTHER PEOPLE’S BAGGAGE .

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