Genres: Cozy Mystery, Mystery
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When interior decorator Madison Night receives a five thousand dollar bill in the mail, she knows it's a message from her past. But when she discovers a corpse while trying to learn of the bill's value, Madison suspects her former lover wants more than a reconciliation. His actions belie his intentions, and even a gallon of daisy yellow paint can't hide the writing on the wall. Madison follows a circuit of rare dollars and common sense and discovers a counterfeit operation, a jealous lover, and the true value of her independence.
Full disclosure, I haven’t read the first book in this series, so like all series that you jump into in the middle of, I am sure I am missing some of the backstory and little nuances from the first book. That being said, I think you can read this book as a standalone since the author did a pretty good job of catching me up on the events of the first book. So if you haven’t read the first one you can certainly start with this one.
I love a good mystery, and I am almost always on the lookout for a new mystery series to read, so I was looking forward to reading this book. In terms of the plot/mystery in the book, it was pretty decent, there was enough to keep me interested and to keep me guessing. And as with most mysteries I would hate to run it for you, so I won’t.
Now the characters in this book are kind of another story for me. I do have to admit I liked just about everyone in the book except for Madison. Madison, more than anything, just annoyed me to no end. She didn’t act rationally hardly ever. Finds a dead body… calls a friend. Someone was in her apartment, doesn’t say anything to anyone because hey why be a bother. It just didn’t see authentic. When I read something, I like to identify with something about the character, Madison to me, seemed so one-dimensional and self-absorbed that I just didn’t like her at all.
In terms of the romantic elements in the book, I think it did kind of suffer from having too many potential interests. They were all fairly likable, Tex was interesting, Brad the ex was also not so bad, Hudson I would say I liked the most of the three. My issues with Tex were that he had a bit of a girlfriend while be interested in Madison. And Brad the ex had too many secrets to really be a good match in my opinion.
There was a whole gimmick aspect to the book, a lot of Doris Day references and even a Cary Grant reference. So if you like that time period you would probably enjoy picking up on a lot of the little references throughout the book. For me personally, I could take them or leave them, I don’t think it really made the book or anything.
Overall, I would have to say the book was okay. It kept my interest for the most part, but the character issues I had with Madison kept me from really enjoying the book the way I would have liked to. I would really only recommend this book to people who have a big interest in the whole Doris Day time period, other than that I would probably pass on it.