Polyester Press, 7/30/2013
Trade Paperback, 290 pages
Mad for Mod Series #2
When mid-century modern interior decorator Madison Night receives a five thousand dollar bill in the mail, she knows it’s a message from her past. Doris Day movies help with inspiration for her business, but her favorite actress can’t help when Madison’s lover comes back. After finding a corpse at a local numismatist, she follows a circuit of rare dollars and common sense to expose a kidnapping plot, a counterfeit operation, and the true price of her independence.
That Touch of Ink by Diane Vallere is the second book in a series featuring Madison Night, a Doris Day wannabee with a Shih Tzu named Rocky. Madison is a mid-century modern interior decorator who owns her own business, Mad for Mod. She's also owner/landlord of her own apartment building. In this outing Madison has an old flame, Brad, send her a $5000 dollar bill, something she knows sends a message specifically for her. Meanwhile Tex, her police detective friend is watching her closely for a number of reasons.
The big hook on this series is the connection to old Doris Day movies. From Madison's job to every little thing she wears, aficionados and fans of Doris Day movies will recognize the many references and picture her various outfits, modeled after clothes Doris Day wore in her movies. The question really becomes twofold: is the Doris Day connection a help or hindrance to propel the series forward; and is the plot strong enough to overcome the forced connections?
I love Doris Day movies. I am already a fan. I own almost every movie she was in, so I get this part of the hook.
I am also a fan of mysteries. There is something about a good mystery that leaves you breathless, trying to not bite your nails, as you read as fast as you can trying to follow the clues and wondering what will happen next.
So, seemingly this should have been a great fit, but, alas, it wasn't. The Doris Day connection rang false and kind of got a little weird for me. After all, she is a well-known woman beyond her acting career and is much more than a star of comedies. Her care and compassion for animals is well known, as is the fact that she would consider herself a tomboy. I grew very weary of reading about what outfit Madison was changing into or what set of period silk pajamas Madison would don next. Madison was starting to annoy me.
Well, did the mystery part of the novel pan out? It did. It was good. There was plenty of madcap action, a few twists and turns, and a satisfying conclusion.
In the end, this is a satisfying mystery novel. For some readers the Doris Day movie connection is going to be a fun addition and will add to their enjoyment of solving the mystery. Recommended
Disclosure: My Kindle edition was courtesy of Polyester Press via Netgalley for review purposes.