Love is in the air as freelance writer Jaine Austen begins a new job at the Dates of Joy matchmaking service--but between juggling her boss's demands, deflecting theadvances of an eccentric suitor, and tracking down a calculating killer, she hardly has time to think about romance. . .
When Jaine lands a job writing web copy and brochures for matchmaker Joy Amoroso, she's excited for a chance to help the lovelorn just in time for Valentine's Day--until she realizes what "Dates of Joy" is really all about. Joy is a ruthless taskmaster who screams at her employees for the smallest infractions, pads her website with pictures of professional models posing as clients, and offers up convincing but empty promises of love in exchange for inordinate sums of money. And woe betide anyone who lays a finger on her heavily guarded stash of chocolates. So it's no surprise when the chiseling cupid turns up dead at a Valentine's Day mixer.
Aghast to find herself on the cops' suspect list, Jaine sets out to track down the killer. Who could it be? Joy's harried assistants, whose lives she made a living hell? Her younger lover? The handsome hunk of a client with a secret in his past? Or the furious Beverly Hills widow who forked over the last of her savings for a Prince Charming who never materialized? Joy left behind a slew of enemies struck by her deviant arrows, so finding the culprit may prove harder than spotting that elusive caramel praline in a box of chocolates--and Jaine will have to flirt with danger to get to the truth...
©2014 Laura Levine (P)2013 Audible Inc.
"I'm crazy about Laura Levine's mystery series. Her books are so outrageously funny, they always make me laugh out loud." (Joanne Fluke)
It's almost Valentine's Day and the only date on Jaine's horizon appears to be her cat, Prozac. However things start looking up when she's asked to write a brochure for a dating agency, Dates of Joy. However Joy Amoroso is the latest thing from joy, instead she's a cruel woman that is intend on taking money from people and not finding them their true loves, as she promised. Jaine wants to write her brochure, earn her money and get as far away from her as she can. Unfortunately Joy also promises to set Jaine up with someone. However her intended date is the last person Jaine would want to date, a rich, old guy that seems obsessed with her cat. Jaine isn't surprised when Joy drops dead from a poisoned chocolate, as there seems to be a lot of people that wanted her dead - herself included. With Prozac's, her cat, help she will have to untangle this mystery before she ends up behind bars.
I've read all of the mysteries in this series, starting with This Pen For Hire. I like the zany antics of Jaine and her gay shoe-salesman neighbour, Lance, and her kooky parents that live in a retirement village in Florida, and have a addiction to buying unnecessary items on late night tv. Together they make for a fun mystery series and I've been hooked from the start.
I was thrilled to discover that Killing Cupid would be available as an audiobook as I've previously read all the books in this series and I wanted to experience Jaine in audio format. While the narrator, Brittany Pressley, wasn't the voice I had thought of in my mind, from reading the previous eleven novels, I quickly adapted and grew to enjoy her impressions of Jaine, Lance, Prozac and all the oddballs at the dating agency.
The mystery itself was fun. I love discovering that the murder victim wasn't well liked because there is always a great variety of murder suspects. In this case, there was a long line of disgruntled dating customers and even Joy's own Aunt, who she stole the business from. It was certainly difficult trying to figure out who the killer was.
Killing Cupid was another fun, zany instalment in the Jaine Austen mysteries. If you're looking for a mystery series with a lot of laughs, then I suggest trying out these mysteries. They are best read in order, so start with A Pen For Hire. For me, I'm now patiently waiting as I look forward to discovering what Jaine gets up to next and I'm hoping that there might be some romance in store for Jaine too!
Witty dialogue, good plot, and quirky characters, I hope more Jaine Austen on Audible soon!
Audible listener who's grateful for a long commute!
I love California mysteries. I've been reading Sue Grafton's Kinsey Milhone since "C is for Corpse" (1986), published the year I moved to Southern California. It's a place of stark contrasts - an oasis wrenched from the desert by William Mulholland, always flooded or in drought; of glittering Hollywood dreams built on the backs of migrants 'sans papiers.'
I keep looking for Marcia Clark's Rachel Knight ("Guilt by Association" (2011) etc.) at the Grand Central Market on Broadway when I get Thai take out after a Case Management Conference at the Stanley Mosk Courthouse. And Michael Connelly - can I subpoena Harry Bosch ("The Black Echo" (1992), etc.) when I am defending a driver confused by Ventura Boulevard? And there's the LA Noir of Raymond Chandler, Gar Anthony Haywood, and Walter Mosley's Easy Rawlins . . .
What Los Angeles mysteries don't do often enough is laugh when desperation turns to absurdity, and a 30 something looking for Mr. Right (or a 'Mr. I'm not a convicted felon and I can pay my half of the rent, but I'll leave the seat up and eat your yogurt') ends up dating an almost 80 something eligible with a blond toupee so frightening it deserves it's own movie, or at least an hour on Dateline.
Laura Levine finds that line between desperation and humor (I think it's on Wilshire Boulevard, west of the 405, by the way) and leaps over it in "Killing Cupid" (2014). We're talking doubled over laughing when laundry needs to be folded, here. And Jaine Austen's parents, who have their own Florida subplot going? I'm perpetually surprised that there aren't charges involved.
About the narration - well, I was listening to Brittany Pressley's narration by my mother's Persian cat, Crush. When Jaine Austen's cat, Prozac, meowed, Crush started looking for the offender. Crush may be a bit inbred, but he was a true believer.
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This is another great book in the Jaine Austen series. Jaine is once again under suspicion for murder. She noises around to find the killer. As always, there are plenty of hijinks on Jaine's part and also from her father. The mystery is fun and enjoyable. The characters are entertaining and realistic. This is a very good story. I can't wait until the next book comes out.
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