Deadly Notions by Elizabeth Lynn Casey is the fourth book in the “Southern Sewing Circle” mystery series. Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime (Penguin), April 2011

Ever since she joined the circle, librarian Tori Sinclair has known that she’d do anything for her new friends—including throw a birthday bash for a fellow sewer’s daughter. While the party is a hit, self-important pageant mom Ashley Lawson and her rude attitude leaves the ladies wanting to permanently shut her high maintenance mouth. But when Ashley turns up dead, the sewing circle is shocked—because as much as they wanted to strangle her, none of them actually would.

With the town aware that the entire club made threats against Mrs. Lawson, Tori and the girls need to band together to figure out who really murdered the monster mom, before the finger-pointing and gossip cause their friendship to unravel.

I just love this series. Children’s birthday parties should not be so hard, but when one of the mothers gives over-the-top parties and your child follows it, what is a mother to do? Enter the Sweet Briar Sewing Circle to the rescue. And when that obnoxious mother is murdered, the innocent ramblings of the group lead the police chief to suspect one of these fine women as being the murderer. What else could Tori do but divert his attention to another. Meanwhile Tori is dealing with a scheming ex-girlfriend who wants what Tori has, Milo. Every time I read a book in this series, I feel like I’m sitting right there with the Sewing Circle women and I can’t help but smile. The mystery was enjoyable with many of the twist and turns but it was the relationship between the women that keeps me coming back for more and more. And the ending…simply beautiful. A sense of a sweet homecoming is created in this heartwarming and charming series. I am so looking forward to reading Dangerous Alterations later this year.

Elizabeth Lynn Casey is the pseudonym of Laura Bradford.

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