Dying In Style by Elaine Viets is the first book in the “Josie Marcus Mystery Shopper” cozy mystery series. Publisher: Signet, October 2005
Mystery shopper Josie Marcus’s report about Danessa Celedine’s exclusive store is less than stellar, and it may cost the fashion diva fifty million dollars. But Danessa’s financial future becomes moot when she’s found murdered, strangled with one of her own thousand-dollar snakeskin belts-and Josie is accused of the crime.
We are introduced to Josie Marcus, her mother Jane, her daughter Amelia, her boss Harry and her best friend, Alyce. In this caper, Josie is assigned to shop at an upscale store and encounters numerous problems at all three stores. When she submits a failing report, the owner abusively lashes at Josie and is later found murdered as well as her boyfriend. Josie with the help of Alyce, set out to prove her innocence by solving the crime.