Monday, November 25, 2013

Review and Giveaway: Fixing to Die

Fixing to Die (Josie Marcus, Mystery Shopper - Book 9) by Elaine Viets

Publication Date: 11/05/2013
Publisher: Penguin Group
Imprint: Obsidian
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Pages: 304
ISBN-10: 0451240987
ISBN-13: 978-0451240989

(Received for an honest review from Obsidian Mystery)

Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, IndieBound

Elaine Viets on the WEB: Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads

Books in the series:

Dying in Style (2005), High Heels Are Murder (2006), An Accessory to Murder (2007), Murder with all the Trimmings (2008), The Fashion Hound Murders (2009), An Uplifting Murder (2010), Death on a Platter (2011), Murder is a Piece of Cake (2012), Fixing to Die (2013)

Coverart: Click the image for a larger, clearer view of the covers in this series.

Excerpt from Fixing to Die, courtesy of the author's website.


Mystery shopper Josie Marcus has been happily married to veterinarian Ted Scottsmeyer for months. But her newly wedded bliss is about to be cut short....
Josie and Ted have finally tied the knot, and they’re ready for the next step: buying a house. Ted’s business partner, Christine, has one she’s willing to sell, but it needs a lot of love. Luckily, the newlyweds are up for the challenge.
But when they tear down a rickety gazebo in the backyard, they find the body of Christine’s sister, a free spirit who supposedly took off six months before. The police arrest Christine for murder, leaving Ted to work overtime at the office to cover for his partner. With no time to work on the house or be with her husband, Josie will have to find the real killer quickly, before both her house and marriage are beyond repair....


Elaine Viets returns with the latest book in the Josie Marcus, Mystery Shopper series, Fixing to Die. Fixing to Die is the ninth book in the series and finds lead character Josie finally, happily married to her Veterinarian husband Ted and looking for a new home of their family. Viets moves between the main mystery involving a murder victim found under the gazebo and a secondary mystery involving her daughter and cyber-bulling. Fans of the series will see less mystery shopping in this one, but more focus on Josie's life and her family, as well as, her sleuthing skills. Viets gives readers a great cozy with an interesting theme.

Josie Marcus is one of my favorite cozy heroines. She has been through the ringer but she has finally married the love of her life and they are now looking for a love nest to raise their family. I liked the fact that Viets keeps Josie true to her original character, even though the circumstances of her life are changing. Josie is just as curious and inquisitive as always. When Ted's partner is accused of murdering her estranged sister, Josie is on the case. She can't seem to stay out of it when someone she cares about is knee deep in a mystery and I love that about her character. It is also apparent in the side mystery involving her daughter.

Viets does such a remarkable job of putting all the pieces of the puzzle throughout the book in such a way that the reader could figure it out, if they could just see the cover of the box. It's funny how she is able to keep you right on the verge of knowing who the killer is and then she throws in a monkey wrench and you're uncertain again. That happens about a dozen times in this one and I never did get it until the end. I didn't have any problems figuring it out once it was revealed, Viets had been deftly alluding to it all along. I loved the mystery aspect of this one and found it very entertaining.

The side story involving Amelia and the cyber bulling she was experiencing was also very good. Not only does this happen every day, it is a serious issue that needs attention and I think Viets did a good job of making readers aware. I also loved Amelia's character as she is developing in the series. She reminds me so much of a Josie and it's obvious to me that she will be a great sleuth too one day. She was such a refreshing character in this story and I thought she added a lot to this book.

There isn't much mystery shopping in this one, as the focus is more on Josie and Ted's new life and the relationship between them and Amelia. I liked the change of pace and thought it was necessary at this point in the series. Readers got to focus a little more on Josie's sleuthing as well. I don't think it deviated too far from the theme of the series. It just took a little break from it. Looking forward to the next one in this delightful series.

Fixing to Die is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.

I'm giving this one 4 out of 5 apples from my book bag!

About the Author:

Elaine Viets is an Agatha and Anthony Award­–winning author who also writes the Dead-End Job Mystery series. She was also given the key to the city of Maplewood, Josie’s hometown. Her mother was a mystery shopper in Elaine’s hometown of St. Louis, Missouri. Elaine has served on the national boards of the Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime. She lives in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with her husband, reporter Don Crinklaw.

Giveaway Details:

The publisher is sponsoring a giveaway for one copy of Fixing to Die by Elaine Viets.

~ You must be an email subscriber to participate.
~ US Addresses only.
~ The deadline to enter this giveaway is Midnight EST, December 9th.

1. Please leave a comment describing a shopping disaster you or someone you know has had.
2. Please fill out the FORM.


Angela - Bookaunt said...

I have to say just about every time I go into a Wal-mart it is a disaster for me. I end up in an argument all the time with someone there, so I really don't like going there at all.

Anonymous said...

Only shopping disaster was many years ago at Target.

Carol N Wong said...

The only shopping diaster for me was buying a cozy at Half Price Books. When I got home, I found out that I had read the book before and they had changed the cover!


Barbara T. said...

As a mystery shopper I always tried to give the clerk the benefit of the doubt. Some just didn't have a clue.

Karen B said...

Walmart! The men pack those flimsy plastic bags so heavy that the bags tear putting them in the car. Several times I've had to go back because a bag was still in that round-about.

Sue said...

I have had a shopping disaster just about every time I go to Walmart---I can never find what I need especially in their grocery department---they just don't carry the brands I like.

Carol M said...

I've bought some clothes that had defects in them that I didn't see. It made me made because I really wanted them and I couldn't find another one in my size to replace them.

lag123 said...

Every trip to Walmart is a disaster.

lag110 at mchsi dot com

Rachelle21 said...

Usually, my disasters are finding a product needs to be thrown out after it was bought. I opened a jar of herring in sour cream and it smelled so bad that I just threw it out.

traveler said...

returns are always annoying since I change my mind. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

Nancy said...

The closest thing was when I checked out, I realized that my wallet was still sitting on the kitchen table. I had to run home, get my wallet and go back before anything melted.

ann said...

I hate finding clothing I like and finding out they dont have it in my size . I hate to have to return things. I bought meat at a store and when I went to make it that night I could smell it was bad - I looked at the label and seen that they put a newer dated label on it covering the out dated label YUCK - argued about a refund when I should have just ask for the manager but the clerk had me so PO'd I let the meat with her and told her she can make it for her supper . This clerk was well known to NEVER give anyone a refund - no matter what. Well shes gone now & I returned shopping there again.

Unknown said...

I truly hate shopping. Every time I have to venture forth to get groceries is a disaster. And I agree with the other commenters...Wal-Mart! Blech! The last time I was there, it was so crowded we couldn't get through the aisles. The manager is too foolish to stock things at night, so the complete store was blocked with pallets of goods. One hateful lady asked if she could just "squeeze past me". I try to be polite, but there was a 6' pallet of crap beside me, a child kneeling in front of me getting something for his mother, her cart across from him and carts backed up from there to the end. I turned to her and said, "NO. There are PEOPLE in front of me." I remained annoyed the rest of the trip. Idiot people just annoy me.

Rita Wray said...

When I needed a dress and ran from store to store and hated everything.

Elizabeth Schroedle said...

I bought a mattress set from a large upscale retail store. I arranged for delivery of the new mattresses and pickup of the old mattresses. The day of delivery, my Mom received a call that they were on their way to pick up the old mattresses. When she asked about the new mattresses, she was told that she had to pick them up herself from the store. I called the store and was advised the same thing,even though I had paid the delivery charge. Needless to say, I cancelled the order and got my money back and filed a complaint with their corporate offices.

Linda Kish said...

I can't really think of any shopping disasters. There are the occasional times I have to return or exchange things but that's usually not a problem. There are more problems with self-centered shoppers who are in their own little world and stop in the middle of the aisle and won't let anyone by.

bn100 said...

can't think of any

Brooke Showalter said...

I can't think of any specific shopping disasters, though I do have lots of trouble shopping at Wal*Mart lol.

Natasha said...

I can't think of any shopping disasters.
Thanks for the chance to win!

Michelle F. said...

Can't think of any shopping disasters, but I can never find any clothes that fit. Sometimes it's hard to find shoes, too.