Review by Publisher's Weekly Review
Quigley's fun debut stars 53-year-old soap opera actress Veronica Walsh, newly unemployed after her show, Days and Nights, is canceled. Rather than grace commercials for hot-flash and osteoporosis meds, Veronica opts to return to her Adirondack hometown and help out with the family bookstore. However, she finds sleepy Barton, N.Y., as beset by drama as any daytime soap. Local merchants, including Veronica's mother, are fervently opposing plans to build a mall nearby, fearing it will destroy Barton's charming downtown. Veronica's next-door neighbor, wealthy and abrasive widow Anna Langdon, takes action to thwart the developer-and then turns up bludgeoned to death with a skillet. As Veronica combs through a long suspect list, childhood chum Mark Burke and fellow former Days and Nights cast member Alex Shelby vie for her romantic attentions. Veronica is an entertaining, down-to-earth heroine, and the mix of smalltown coziness and small-screen glam will leave readers eagerly awaiting their next trip to Barton. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Library Journal Review
Veronica Walsh, a popular soap opera star whose show has just ended, auditions for a new role as amateur sleuth in her picturesque hometown in the Adirondacks. Just one day after Veronica returns home, her snarky neighbor-a ruthless small business owner with numerous enemies-is murdered. The victim's enemy list is a mile long: disgruntled tenants, angry employees, and even an ex-boyfriend. Meanwhile, potential changes for the town have been swirling around. Most dramatically for the small business owners, there's the threat of a new mall nearby. Veronica, at loose ends and afraid a friend of hers might be the killer, starts snooping around, enlisting the help of her best friend, a former TV costar, and a professor from the local college. The tale takes on a slightly soap opera tone (with superb dialog and posturing) until a dramatic climax catches most of the sleuths off guard. VERDICT Quigley's debut is a traditional village cozy infused with deftly applied soap opera flavoring. Her comfortable, first-person narrative introduces a talented fiftysomething heroine. Think Murder She Wrote or Shelley Costa's You Cannoli Die Once. (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review
In Quigley's debut, a former star of daytime drama solves a hometown mystery in the Adirondacks. When soap opera diva Veronica Walsh's series is canceled, she finds herself without a job for the first time in 32 years. Since 54-year-old actresses get offered nothing but geriatric commercials, she decides to go back to her house in Barton, N.Y., for a breather. Her first night there, she overhears her next-door neighbor Anna Langdon breaking off an affair with Tim Petersen, Veronica's high school boyfriend. When Anna blocks a sale of an old farm to a mall developer, she becomes a hero to Veronica's mother, who runs the family-owned bookstore, and all the other small-business owners in town, including more of Veronica's classmates from Sacred Heart High. Veronica is intrigued and mildly embarrassed when Anna invites her to come over for breakfast the next day. But when Veronica arrives, she finds Anna lying dead from a blow to the head with a cast-iron skillet. Although Veronica is repeatedly warned that she's not in a soap opera anymore and she should stay out of the way, she likes having a job again: finding the killer. She also enjoys the male companionship of her classmate Mark Burke, a history professor at the local college, and Alex Shelby, her former leading man. With their help, she compiles a list of suspects that grows longer as more days pass, more people who say that they shouldn't speak ill of the dead proceed to do so and more motives for the murder surface. Quigley supplies more hugging, kissing and backbiting than actual suspense, especially since Veronica's detection skills partly rely on overhearing key conversations, but her genial debut ably captures small-town living and a sense of class and family.]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.