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Publisher's Summary

New York Times bestselling author Denise Grover Swank gives a former TV star one more shot at fame - and it proves to be a killer comeback...

Ten years ago, Summer Butler was television's most popular teenage sleuth. Since then, she's hit - what gossip sites just love to call - the gutter. Nearly bankrupt, betrayed, estranged from her greedy mother, and just about unemployable, she's coaxed into that desperate haven for has-beens: reality TV.

Winging it as a faux PI, she'll solve off-the-cuff mysteries in her hometown of Sweet Briar, Alabama. For added drama, there's police chief Luke Montgomery, inconveniently Summer's first and only love.

It's when Summer stumbles upon a very real corpse that Darling Investigations takes an unexpected twist. The growing list of suspects is a big draw to viewers, but the reality is that Summer doesn't know whom she can trust. Someone has written this killer new scene especially for her, and unless Summer gives the role everything she's got, it could be her last...

©2018 Denise Grover Swank (P)2017 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    103
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    62
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    19
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    5
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    4

Performance

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    41
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    12
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    3
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Story

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Delayed homecoming for Summer

Financially, Summer has almost hit bottom. The commitment to pay for the family farm, a promise she made with her grandfather before he died accidentally has consumed her meager earnings. In desperation, she agrees to star in a reality show as a detective.

Returning to her hometown, fraught with anxiety and dread, she runs into her old boyfriend, the Chief of Police. Throw in 2 murders, a bag of cash, and a bully for a series director and her life becomes only more complicated.

The book has a fairly complex storyline with many well developed characters. The mystery element was fast-paced and fun to listen to. The book was NOT naughty, as described by a previous review. No sexual scenes or descriptions, just intention and wishful thinking.

Narrator Megan Tusing was good, but will improve with more differentiation of voices between characters.

Easy, fun listen.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Loved it!!

Denise Grover Swank has done it again!! I was completely absorbed in Summer’s world from the beginning of the book. A page turner, filled with drama, comedy, and suspense. I absolutely LOVE this series and cannot wait for Blazing Summer!! So anxious to read it and see what kind of trouble Summer and Dixie can get into.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Wow! What a book

This book was so much fun! You did not know who was going to get into trouble next. The storyline was wonderful and entertaining. Another great book Denise.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Unexpected

I truly enjoyed this book it seemed a bit slow to me in the beginning but when it picked up it was awesome. I do recommend this book as a light read driving or sitting at work it will give you a good flow to your day.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Meh..typical "modern" cozy

I must be getting old. I remember back in the day when even cozy mysteries attempted to create interesting, original characters and took a stab at being a real, well plotted mystery.

Of late too many new cozies are just cookie cutter mediocre books. This one is no exception. It basically just ticked off the cozy tropes and called it a day.

Female detective with either no spine or no brains? check.
Stereotype love interest (usually the cop)? check
Juvenile romance with "sparks" and "electricity up the spine" comments? check
Painfully obvious murderer easily detected by chapter 5? check
Some catchy "something" to try to look original (character was child star/reality show") check

I would have rated this lower save for a couple of actually interesting characters and the fact that the first third of the book wasn't completely dreadful. It just went downhill from there. I finally gave up about 3/4 of the way through and just jumped to the end to confirm my solution was correct (it was).

I won't be reading more from the series.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Nancy Drew Southern Style

A woman was a teenage gorl detective on TV, a superstar whose star has fallen way down. In desperation she agrees to a tv reality show where she is a real detective. It started as down and out Malibu but quickly switched to a southern story with complex family issues that seem to always be part of that genre. Not bad. And DEFINITELY not naughty as one reviewer says. Good grief. The Golden Girls has 10x the innuendo and situations. I would welcome some real naughty.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Truly enjoyable

This story kept me going. I love a good read. Bonus having the ability to switch to audible while I'm driving, cleaning or doing laundry. Better than watching TV!!!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • GMcDan
  • Springfield, OH, United States
  • 03-16-18

Entertaining!!!

If you love Rose Gardner, Neely Kate or even Evanovich's Stephanie Plum, you'll love this!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Good read!

I can’t wait to read more as this caricature grows! Recommend this book to everyone

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Fun read!!!

Loved it. Wanted something fun, light, but still a mystery. Perfect fit. Will read it again.