October is shaping up to be scary busy for my party planning business, Liv 4 Fun, with a riverboat gambler-theme engagement party for seventy-five people and a city-wide, multi-venue spooky Halloween fundraiser for charity to cap off the month. I had hopes the annual Dixie businesswomen’s retreat this weekend would be a respite for me before crunch time—but it isn’t exactly turning out that way.
Morgan Robison, president of the Professional Women’s Association of Dixie, known as PWAD for short and commonly referred to as pee wad, has assigned me the task of looking after our guest speaker for the retreat. Lucinda Grable, who grew up in Dixie and had been Morgan’s college roommate at Ole Miss, is now a TV celebrity with her own popular ghost-hunting show. I foolishly thought it might be fun to meet her and hear about her ghost-hunting exploits. If I’d only known, I would have run faster than snagged pantyhose.
Morgan’s a vice-president at Dixie Savings and Loan, with her main qualification being that her daddy owns the bank. But Morgan really excelled at a couple of things: telling other people what to do, and making time with other women’s husbands and boyfriends. Both of these talents mean there are lots of people in town who don’t much care for her. So when a few other PWAD members and I stumble over her dead body on the grounds of the retreat center, there are suspects aplenty.
With Morgan turning up up dead just after Lucinda and her ghost-hunting crew had led us on an excursion in a neglected, little family cemetery, a couple of the ladies imagine there may be some otherworldly element involved. But when Sheriff Dave arrests their friend for murder, the pair’s suspicions move from ghosts to ghost hunters. And the reality TV diva threatens to call the law on them unless I can get her newfound “stalkers” to behave.
I’ve really tried to stay out of the murder investigation this time around. The last time there were murders in Dixie, the FBI started eyeing my husband and father-in-law as possible suspects. I had no choice but to try to point the sheriff in the right direction. While I’m not happy Morgan was murdered, she was neither kith nor kin to me.
However, Lucinda’s stalkers are beginning to make me wonder if Dave has locked up the wrong person for murder. Lucinda’s personal assistant appears to have caused Di and me to have a little accident —and the sheriff seems totally disinclined to look at other suspects. So I’m left with no choice but to track a killer with my trusty sidekick, Di Souther.
By the way, Di would not appreciate being referred to as my sidekick, so maybe I should dub her my partner in crime-solving instead. Either way when it comes to unraveling a murder mystery the two of us fancy ourselves to be a little bit Thelma and Louise but, truth be told, Lucy and Ethel would probably be closer to the truth. Still when the two of us go looking for a killer we usually find one—much to the consternation of Sheriff Dave, who is also Di’s somewhat complicated love interest.
You can read more about killer parties, Southern charm—and murder in It’s Your Party, Die If You Want To, the second book in the Liv and Di in Dixie mystery series, published by Kensington. Great timing for a fun Halloween read.
Between a riverboat gambler-theme engagement party and a murder mystery dinner for charity, Dixie, Tennessee, party planner Liv McKay is far too frenzied to feel festive. Add to the mix her duties at the annual businesswomen’s retreat and the antics of a celebrity ghost-hunting diva, and Liv’s schedule is turning out to be the scariest thing about this Halloween—especially when the ladies stumble across a dead body in a cemetery. . .
Morgan Robison was a party girl with a penchant for married men and stirring up a cauldron of drama. Any number of scorned wives or frightened philanderers could be behind her death. As Liv and her best friend, Di, set out to dig up the truth, they’ll face the unexpected and find their efforts hampered by a killer with one seriously haunting vendetta. . .
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About the author
Vickie Fee grew up on a steady diet of Nancy Drew, daydreams and sweet iced tea. She has a journalism degree and spent many years as a reporter covering small Southern towns populated with colorful characters, much like those in her books’ fictional town of Dixie, Tennessee. She’s a past president of the Malice in Memphis chapter of Sisters in Crime and current member of the Wisconsin Sisters in Crime and Guppies Chapter. She’s currently at work on the next book in the Liv and Di in Dixie mystery series. Connect with Vickie at vickiefee.com, on Facebook and on Twitter.
All comments are welcomed.
Giveaway: Leave a comment below for your chance to win a signed copy of It’s Your Party, Die If You Want To. US and Canadian entries only, please. The giveaway will end October 1, 2016 at 12 AM (midnight) EST. Good luck everyone!