Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Title:    Tulle Death Do Us Part [Vintage Magic Mysteries, book 6]
Author:  Annette Blair
Rating:  ★★★★

Annette Blair's Vintage Magic Mysteries series is one of my cozy mysteries to date. Tulle Death Do Us Part, the sixth book, was especially good reading on a rainy hump-day (Wednesday) with nothing else to do but curl up in my bed with a book that just gave me good vibes.

Maddie’s love of classic fashion has made her Vintage Magic boutique a success—even if the visions she experiences when touching certain items often lead her into trouble. Decades ago, at a Mystic Country Club costume ball, a secret scavenger hunt ended in an unexplained death, hastily concealed.

Now, Maddie's invited to participate in a similar anniversary event: but one touch of the vintage petticoat used to hide evidence of the original crime hurtles Maddie into a scavenger hunt of her own. She must find missing petticoat pieces and re-stitch the clues it expose a killer!

I couldn't put Tulle Death Do Us Part down and I kept going back to it in between breaks from work. By this time around, I feel like I've gotten to know the whole gang pretty well. Plus, I couldn't resist that gorgeous cover (and all the other covers in the series). This series probably has one of the most enticing book covers to date. And the fashion descriptions just keep making me want to go to the nearest vintage store and hunt for vintage bags and accessories - especially the Lucite ones.

I wasn't a fan of Maddie prior to this book - she was just too nosy for me, but I enjoyed her a lot more this time. She really has it in for justice, and she's ballsy. She also knows herself well enough to stick to what she wants in life - and does a pretty good job of it, too - despite getting her heart broken repeatedly.

I'm really glad she ended up with him (no spoilers!) and their coming together (no pun intended) was explosive. It was so funny to see him so enamored and immediately attached to her. They make a good pair and hopefully they'll end...till death do them part?

Tulle Death Do Us Part wouldn't be complete without its motley of secondary characters - Aunt Fee, Eve, and my favorite - Dolly Sweet. It's nice to see that almost all of them got happy endings, because they all deserved it. Dolly Sweet is your 106-year-old grandmother who gets it on with a ghost who was her ex-lover, and their love affair caused a huge scandal back in the day. I had an inkling of how her story will go, because after six books? She deserved it.

The mystery was nice and confusing, and I wasn't able to predict whodunit. There were a lot of unforeseen twists and discoveries in the end. After reading a lot of mystery novels, it's nice to be caught off-guard by a book, especially when you least expect it. However, there were too many people to keep track of and too many names so I kept getting confused during the discussion of the crime. Also, we lose track of Bambi Jo after she was supposed to be questioned. She suddenly appeared in the end again. How come she wasn't grilled prior to that, eh? But then again, if she did, the crime would have been a whole lot easier to solve for us readers.

What I feel about the mystery plot, however, is that it seemed to take a backseat compared to the romance going on. I feel like the plot wasn't fully developed so that it will stand out and be the focus of the series. I, as a reader, was more enamored with the book more because of the fashion and romantic stories - and there was a lot of romance going around! - than the crime and investigation that occurred. Also, did he die? That wasn't clear by the end.

Nevertheless, I really enjoyed reading Tulle Death Do Us Part. I hope that this isn't the last in the series because I want more beautiful dresses, vintage bags, cozy mysteries, and further interaction between him and Madeira. However, there's no forthcoming book listed in Goodreads and Annette Blair's website, so I got to keep my fingers crossed.

This is my 15th entry for the 2013 Witches & Witchcraft Challenge. Just one more book till I reach my goal status :)

How about you, read any good cozy mystery books lately?