When Deuce Winters, a stay-at-home dad in sleepy Rose Petal, Texas, discovers a dead body in his mini-van, it quickly throws his quiet life into disarray. It doesn't help that the victim ruined Deuce's high school football career and married his ex-girlfriend. As the number one suspect in the court of public opinion, Deuce is determined to clear his name, with a little help from his wife, Julianne, a high-powered attorney. His search for the killer leads him to a business plan gone awry and a gaggle of jilted lovers.
This is another cozy mystery that's due at the library. So, I had to read it. A lot of times this doesn't work well; I feel resentful while reading in this situation. I also had some major doubts about this book- the cozy field is pretty much dominated by women. In essence, I went into this book expecting to hate it. To my surprise, I finished this book in less than 24 hours.
For the most part, I liked the main character who is a stay at home dad. I'm putting down his experiences with people looking funny at him to living in a small, conservative, Texas town. (He lives in one in real life and was a stay at home dad.) My husband was a stay at home dad for a while. Women used to smile at him and tell him he was sweet or that he was "such a good dad". My husband would tell them, "No one should think I'm doing a great job because I only do what women do every day without any thanks. Except they (the women) do it better." He would then go on about what a shame it was that what he was doing was so unique that it deserved to be commented on- that more dads should take an active part in the lives of their kids. Then, they would give him an even bigger smile.
What I disliked about the character was his "dwarf issue". He encounters a "little person" who is a private detective. They get into a scuffle. He asks someone in law enforcement about the P.I. and is told that he's a good investigator but has "little man syndrome". I think that does cross a line and I didn't like it. But I did think that Deuce's encounters with Rose Petal's "Mommy Mafia"- that group of PTA type moms was spot on. I guess hatred of them is universal.
Recommendation: I'd say that if you like cozies, you will like this book. It did stand out among the many craft and cooking cozies that we have been overrun with.
Overall Rating: 3 stars
Genre Rating: 4 teapots (for cozies)
:Jeffrey Allen Interview at RT Book Reviews
Jeffrey Allen's Website