BOOK REVIEW: THE DYED AND DEAD
Paradise, Ohio is the sort of small town where everybody knows your name as well as pretty much everything about you and your family. The community rally around each other when there is trouble and helps out whenever help is needed. But even in this tight knit community, people have secrets. However, even the closest held secret is often known by someone. And sometimes, that person decides to use that secret.
In Tie Dyed and Dead, the sixth book in Short's Josie Toadfern series, it's just such a secret that causes all of the trouble. In the 1950's and early 1960's, the Mayfair Sisters were a singing sensation. But during the 1960's change swept across the country, changing everything, including America's taste in music. Suddenly, the much sought after sister act was finished and the three Mayfair sisters, Cornelia, Candice and Constance, went their separate ways. Although their mother continued to live in Paradise, people pretty much forgot about the family. Until their mother Dora's health began to fail. Then the sisters decide to do one last concert, back home in Paradise, as a benefit to raise money for their mother's care. With them comes some not so likable people, including the girls' former agent and Cornelia's husband.
Josie Toadfern runs the local laundromat and is a well known stain expert. Because her laundromat is situated on Main Street, she is literally right in the center of nearly everything that happens in Paradise. In this book, Josie becomes involved with the Mayfair family when she is asked to help prepare the vintage costumes for the concert. Unfortunately, this leads to her involvement in two murders. Worse yet, she's even a suspect in the first murder.
The ghost of Mrs. Oglevee, Josie's nemesis and former teacher, returns in this book to point Josie in the right direction in her personal life. Mrs. Oglevee, rather than being spooky, acts as sort of a moral compass for Josie.
Fans of Josie will be very pleased with this entry in the series. For people who have never tried Short's books, picking up Tie Dyed and Dead first is fine. Though a series, the books can easily be read out of order because whatever background that a reader needs is replayed in each book.
REVIEWED BY CARYN ST. CLAIR
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