At any other time, a day in the life of Valentine Beaumont would be a pleasure to recount. I’d regale tales of what it’s like to be a beautician and own Beaumont’s. I’d even tell you about my weekly visits to Rueland Memorial Hospital in the heart of Massachusetts, and how the silliest things like nail polish and hair extensions cheer up sick kids. I’d also share what it’s like to be the boss of three very different employees who range from extremely talented to she’s-got-scissors-in-her-hand, run-for-your-life.
Today, however, I wouldn’t be disclosing any of those things, because today we’d just discovered one of my most loyal clients, Portia Reynolds, deader than split ends on a bleached blonde. There were enough suspects in the salon to point fingers at, and one who’d even fled the scene.
To make matters worse, hard-nosed Detective Romero, all New York City tough in his faded jeans and brown plaid shirt, sauntered into Beaumont’s, and after almost stripping me bare of my clothes with those piercing blue eyes of his, well, he went on to practically accuse me of murder. Me. An innocent, five-foot-four spit of a thing. Why? Because I was the last to see Portia alive. “Except for the killer,” I’d retorted. I’d started Portia’s facial, left her to steam, and half an hour later she was dead.
What I really wanted to recount was how this Detective was getting on my nerves. Portia was one of my best clients. Why would I kill her? That’s what I’d asked Romero. I knew I didn’t murder Portia. And if it was the last thing I accomplished, I intended to find out who did!
You can read more about Valentine in Murder, Curlers & Cream, the first book in the “Valentine Beaumont” mystery series. Look for book two, Murder, Curlers & Canes in the spring of 2017.
Valentine Beaumont is a beautician with a problem. Not only has she got a meddling mother, a wacky staff, and a dying business, but now she’s got a dead client who was strangled while awaiting her facial.
With business the way it is, combing through this mystery may be the only way to save her salon. Until a second murder, an explosion, a kidnapping, death threats, and the hard-nosed Detective Romero complicate things. But Valentine will do anything to untangle the crime. That’s if she can keep her tools of the trade in her bag, keep herself alive, and avoid falling for the tough detective.
In the end, how hard can that be?
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Meet the author
Arlene McFarlane is the author of the Murder, Curlers series. Previously an aesthetician, hairstylist, and owner of a full-service salon, Arlene now writes full time. When she’s not making up stories, or being a wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, cat-mom, or makeover artist, you’ll find her making music on the piano.
Arlene is a member of Romance Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, Toronto Romance Writers, SOWG, and the Golden Network. She’s won and placed in over 30 contests, including twice in the Golden Heart and twice in the Daphne du Maurier.
Arlene lives with her family in Canada. Connect with Arlene at arlenemcfarlane.com.
All comments are welcomed.
Murder, Curlers & Cream is available at online booksellers.