Secret affairs, hunky gardeners, and housewives desperate enough to bare it all....welcome to Magnolia Lane, TV's newest hit show.
As the new wardrobe assistant, shoe designer Maddie Springer is in fashion heaven. But then a young starlet is found dead. Now it's up to Maddie to sift through a secretive leading lady, an actor on the verge of a nervous breakdown, a sexy cyber scandal, and one tabloid reporter who'll stop at nothing to get the story of the century. Not to mention her tangles with the infuriatingly sexy lead detective, Jack Ramirez. In a biz where lies and deception earn Emmys, Maddie will have to play the role of a lifetime to catch Hollywood's hottest killer. But if she doesn't watch her step, Maddie's 15 minutes of fame just may be her last.
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Series starting to decline
I would maybe recommend it if a friend were looking for light reading and didn't mind the soap opera drama that the main character is constantly turning her life into (not to mention that this particular installment actually revolves around the set of a primetime soap opera). I enjoyed the first book, but as i keep reading further in the series, Maddie's little moments, crazy ideas, and melodramatic reactions to things, and continual misunderstanding of her love interest Ramirez, have been driving me more and more nuts, so I'm not sure how much more I can take. I may try book 4 before i lose patience with her.Maddie and her cast of friends are, if nothing else, certainly a delightful little escape from the usual mystery novel, which are often more dark and procedural.
One of the craziest characters I've come across in any series is Mrs. Rosenblat, a ridiculously-dressed friend of Maddie's mother, who says she communicates with the other world through a spirit guide, and is always warning Maddie about the color of her aura. She is very well performed, and always makes me laugh. Shaffer's voicing makes her really come to life as a character.
Because I tend to do most of my listening on my way to and from work (combination hoofing it and bus), I usually don't get in more than an hour or two of a book a day. But the style of this series is a really easy listen, and often fast-paced. The first book kept me hooked for as long as I could, to the point of continuing to listen while at work, and I finished it in only 2 days. This one took me a couple more days, but it could easily be a one or two day listen over a weekend to entertain during chores and such.
Entertaining, but not outstanding