Tag Archives: Diane Vallere

A day in the life of Sylvia Stryker by Diane Vallere

Hi. I’m Sylvia Stryker, security section for the Moon Unit 5.

That sounds pretty good, right? I bet you almost thought it was true. It will be, some day. Just not yet. Oh, I’m qualified to work in the security division, all right. I was at the top of my class at the space academy until I had to drop out and help my mom run the ice mines on Plunia. And even after I dropped out of school, I traded Plunian Potatoes for used textbooks from the courses I hadn’t been able to attend and studied after our work day ended. I studied so much I practically memorized the course material.

Who am I kidding? I did memorize the course material. If the space academy had let me take the final exams, I still would have graduated at the top of my class even though my last year had been self-taught. I don’t want to brag, but I really am that smart. If I didn’t live under the curse of Jack Stryker, a.k.a renegade dad who got arrested and left mom and me alone, I could have had any security job in the galaxy. I could have been a contender.

And then last week, I found out the Moon Unit Corporation was reviving their branch of cruise spaceships with the newly designed Moon Unit 5. That was the day that everything changed.

I bought the Book of Protocols from an earlier Moon Unit on the black market. Mom found me reading it at the breakfast table. Three days after I told her about it, I received a packet in the mail. A confirmation letter, stating that my application for work aboard the Moon Unit 5 had been accepted, along with an orientation packet.

Mom had filled out the application for me and the Federation Council had accepted it. She told me I’d sacrificed enough of my life to help her after dad was taken away, and it was time for me to go out on my own and make her proud. The only detail left was for me to send in the results of my physical.

I took it three times.

Every time, I got the same results: my lungs had become accustom to the high concentration of oxygen on Plunia—almost 100% pure in the ice mines—a far cry from the 78% nitrogen, 22% oxygen mix found in the environments people from Earth tolerated. Every doctor said the same thing: the survival risks were too great. They predicted I’d pass out before the ship reached the breakaway point.

Everything I’d ever wanted—my dreams, hopes, and desires—gone, just like that.

I had a choice: tell my mom that, despite the risks she’d taken by filling out the application on my behalf, I wouldn’t be working on the Moon Unit 5 because I’d failed the physical, or upload falsified test results to the Moon Unit mainframe computer and come up with a plan for survival.

I pressed send.


You can read more about Sylvia in Murder On Moon Trek 1, the first book in the NEW “Sylvia Stryker Outer Space” mystery series.

When space academy dropout Sylvia Stryker hacks her way into the position of Uniform Inventory Manager aboard the Moon Unit 5, she jumps at the chance to leave her small planet behind. But when the ship’s second navigation officer is found dead in the uniform closet shortly after departing the space station, Sylvia’s problems become bigger than falsified test results. And when her supervisor places her on probation for her own uniform infraction, she’s at risk of being dropped off at the nearest substation. Juggling red shirts, white lies, and an army of little green men, Sylvia has to expose a killer before the Moon Unit 5 becomes space dust.

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Giveaway: Two readers selected at random will receive a kindle copy of Murder On Moon Trek 1. Leave a comment below for your chance to win. The giveaway ends December 20, 2017. Good luck everyone!

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About the author
After two decades working for a top luxury retailer, Diane Vallere traded fashion accessories for accessories to murder. Murder On Moon Trek 1 is the first in her new Sylvia Stryker Outer Space Mysteries. Diane also writes the Madison Night, Samantha Kidd, and Lefty Award-nominated Material Witness and Costume shop mystery series. She started her own detective agency at age ten and has maintained a passion for shoes, clues, and clothes ever since. Visit Diane at dianevallere.com.

All comments are welcomed.

A Day In The Life of Margo Tamblyn by Diane Vallere

masking-for-troubleBeing in charge is a weird thing. I don’t think I’ve ever been in charge of anything in my life! Mostly that’s because I grew up in my dad’s costume shop and he was always around to take care of things. But since I moved back to Proper City and took over—letting him take off for parts unknown to scope out costumes around the country—it’s been me in the driver’s seat.

Considering I’ve spent the past several years working as a magician’s assistant in Las Vegas, being in charge of Disguise DeLimit is a nice change. It was fun to unpack the masks and vampire teeth in July when they started arriving in our daily shipments. Dad made it clear that it was up to me to run the shop, and so far, so good. These next few weeks are going to be the real challenge, though, because we’re headed into Halloween. And Halloween at a Costume Shop is like Mother’s Day at a Hallmark store (except with witch hats). The key is to keep the shelves stocked and be creative enough to suggest costume ideas on the fly.

Between you and me, I didn’t actually think my dad was going to leave town during Halloween season but this is the first year since he’s owned the store that he could and I wasn’t going to stop him. And everything was fine until Paul Haverford, the developer who’s been buying up property around Proper City, dropped off the paperwork that disqualified Disguise DeLimit from participating in the annual costume contest. We’ve provided the winning costume for the past ten years. If we’re disqualified then that means Candy Girls has a chance of winning, and I can’t let that happen. It would send a message that Disguise DeLimit wasn’t as good as it used to be when my dad ran the store. It would be the end of an era!

As soon as we’re closed I’m going to go down to Paul Haverford’s office and fix this. I don’t know what I have to do to change his mind, but I’ll do whatever it takes. He’s a business man, so I’ll appeal to his business side. I’m sure I can reason with him. I mean, the man might be a little scary and intense, but if I act professionally, he’s gotta listen to me, right?

Maybe I should change out of my hobo costume first.


Masking for Trouble is the second book in the Costume Shop mystery series, published by Penguin Random House, October 2016.

Halloween brings more tricks than treats for costume shop owner Margo Tamblyn in the second in a new cozy series from the national bestselling author of the Material Witness Mysteries.

Halloween conjures up big business for Margo Tamblyn’s costume shop, Disguise DeLimit, but this year, the holiday comes knocking with serious trouble. Venture capitalist Paul Haverford plans to rezone historic downtown into a glitzy commercial area which would push out local business. Margo is set on saving her family’s store, especially after a nasty run-in with the chain-store tycoon, but after Haverford’s body is discovered during a spooky party at the derelict Alexandria Hotel, Margo finds herself dressed as the police’s prime suspect.

Anxious to clear her name, Margo begins hunting down anyone who might have wanted Haverford dead. Between all of his malicious maneuverings, the murdered mogul had buckets of people anxious to see him gone. Now, Margo will have to use every trick in the book to find a cloaked killer—before someone else winds up wearing a death shroud. . .

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About the author
After two decades working for a top luxury retailer, Diane Vallere traded fashion accessories for accessories to murder. A Disguise To Die For is the first Costume Shop Mystery. Diane is the president of Sisters in Crime, and also writes the Madison Night, Style & Error, and Lefty Award-nominated Material Witness mysteries. She started her own detective agency at age ten and has maintained a passion for shoes, clues, and clothes ever since. Connect with Diane at dianevallere.com.

All comments are welcomed.

Giveaway: Leave a comment below for your chance to win copy of Masking For Trouble, either e-book or paperback (winner’s choice). The giveaway will end October 30, 2016 at 11:59 AM EST. Good luck everyone!

A Day in the Life with Poly Monroe by Diane Vallere

Silk StalkingsI’m a lucky woman. Less than a year ago I worked in a job with no advancement for a misogynist boss who was so cheap he once asked me if I could use the free floss he got from the dentist instead of thread on a line of dresses. I shared a 500-square-foot apartment in a crummy part of Los Angeles with my college boyfriend even though the only thing we seemed to share was a mutual desire to pay only half of the rent. But look at me now! I reopened the family fabric shop a few months ago and, well, we’re not setting any sales records, but I haven’t closed our doors yet, either. I adopted two kittens, Pins and Needles, who “help” me run the store, and my VW Bug is running better than ever thanks to my friend Charlie, the auto mechanic who lives across the street. Heck, being her friend has toughened me up a bit too. I used to trust everybody; she doesn’t trust anybody! I like to think I’m a good influence on her, but it’s hard to say because she’s a pretty private person.

I guess some of that comes from having been given up for adoption and spending most of her life in foster homes. And then tracking her biological parents here, only to learn that they’re two of the richest people in town. She never told them that she knows who they are. I only discovered it when I first moved here and thought she was connected to some of the bad stuff that was happening around the fabric store. I think the only other person who knows is Vaughn McMichael, her brother. He grew up rich while she grew up poor. It’s a testament to the kind of guy Vaughn is that she doesn’t hate him.

I know her background is her own business, but it’s hard for me to watch her keep all that anger bottled up inside. I wish she would tell Vic and Adelaide who she is and try to make amends, but she won’t even talk about it. (I’m a little intimidated by Vic McMichael myself so I get that part, but Adelaide is a wonderful woman!) I can’t help thinking that if Charlie doesn’t do something about this herself, it’s all going to come out in a very public way—which would be the worst possible scenario for a private person like her.

I sure hope I’m not right. . .


Silk Stalkings is the third book in the Material Witness mystery series, published by Penguin Random House, August 2016.

Fabric shop owner Polyester Monroe can get tangled up in textiles, but it’s murder that really throws her for a loop in the latest mystery from the national bestselling author of Crushed Velvet.

The time has come for San Ladrón, California’s annual Miss Tangorli beauty pageant, and Poly has agreed to use Material Girl’s inventory of shimmery silks to create embellished gowns fit for a crown. But when millionaire Harvey Halliwell—the man who revived the city’s citrus trade with his imported tangorli tree—is found dead days before the pageant contestants are announced, something sour takes over the town.

To make matters worse, her friend, mechanic Charlie Brooks, is soon caught up in the crime, having been seen in the company of the case’s prime suspect. Now Poly’s on a mission to squeeze out the truth. But as she searches for a pattern, the killer seems intent on cutting up the evidence. . .

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About the author
After two decades working for a top luxury retailer, Diane Vallere traded fashion accessories for accessories to murder. Silk Stalkings, #3 in her national bestselling and Lefty-Award nominated Material Witness Mystery Series, comes out in August 2016. Diane is the vice president/president elect of Sisters in Crime. She also writes the Madison Night, Costume Shop, and Style & Error Mysteries. She started her own detective agency at age ten and has maintained a passion for shoes, clues, and clothes ever since. Connect with Diane at dianevallere.com.

All comments are welcomed.

Giveaway: Leave a comment below for your chance to win a kindle copy of Silk Stalkings. The giveaway will end August 22, 2016 at 12 AM (midnight) EST. Good luck everyone!

A Day in the Life of Margo Tamblyn by Diane Vallere

Disguise To Die ForThis is a disaster. And I’m not talking about a disaster like the time Maynard—my boss in Las Vegas—lost control of the doves during his magic routine and one of them pooped on a lady’s hair from the rafters, either. I’m talking about a real disaster. If I can’t turn things around, Ebony might go to jail. And since Ebony is the closest thing I have to a mother, I can’t let that happen.

I tend to get mixed up sometimes, so let me back up. A couple of days ago, Blitz Manners came into Disguise DeLimit—my family’s costume shop—and threw a bunch of money around. Seems he wanted Ebony—who runs Shindig Party Planning–to put together his birthday party on short notice, and us to make forty costumes for the guests. (I know it sounds strange to some people, but here in Proper City, Nevada, we tend to dress up in costume for almost any occasion. Makes living in the desert a little less boring!)

The high paying/last minute job wouldn’t have been so terrible if Blitz had wanted the cast of The Wizard of Oz because we could have rented our existing set of costumes and then turned our Planet of the Apes suits into flying monkeys, but noooo. He wanted a detective themed party. So we pulled it off—and by we, I mean me, because my dad just had a heart attack and I don’t care if we do need the money, I’m not going to let the whims of a spoiled rich kid affect my dad’s recovery! But now I think it would have been better off if I’d said no and walked away. Because if I turned down the job, then Ebony would have too. Which means I never would have walked in on her holding a carving knife while standing over Blitz’s dead body, dressed in a Sherlock Holmes costume designed by my dad.

Before you start to think what everybody else thinks, let me be clear: Ebony didn’t do it.

Ebony is fierce and feisty and fabulous, but she’s not a murderer. If Ebony got mad at Blitz, the worst thing she would have done was tell him to quit whining and act like an adult. He was turning twenty-six. I mean come on. Taylor Swift is twenty-six and she can hold her own on stage with Mick Jagger! I don’t mean to speak ill of the dead, but Blitz used some kind of emotional blackmail to get Ebony to take the job, and now, thanks to me and my mad costume-making skills, thirty-nine party guests in detective costumes are pointing the finger at Ebony and saying she’s guilty. And the worst part of it all is that she left town, which makes it look like everybody is right in suspecting her.

Why would she leave town? Why won’t she tell me about the connection between her and Blitz’s family? Why aren’t the police looking for other suspects? Like I said, it’s a disaster.

So now, I have only a couple of days to find Ebony, take care of my dad, keep my cat from leaving dead mice in the stockroom, and solve Blitz’s murder before Magic Maynard expects me back at work. To be honest, I wish I’d swiped Maynard’s magic wand before leaving Las Vegas, because I’m pretty sure I’m going to need to pull a rabbit out of a hat. Actually, forget the magic wand. I wish I’d swiped his hat!


A Disguise To Die For is the first book in the NEW Costume Shop mystery series, published by Berkley Prime Crime, February 2016.

Someone is dressed to kill in the debut Costume Shop Mystery from the national bestselling author of the Material Witness mysteries.

No sooner does former magician’s assistant Margo Tamblyn return home to Proper City, Nevada, to run Disguise DeLimit, her family’s costume shop, than she gets her first big order. Wealthy nuisance Blitz Manners needs forty costumes for a detective-themed birthday bash. As for Blitz himself, his Sherlock Holmes is to die for—literally—when, in the middle of the festivities, Margo’s friend and party planner Ebony Welles is caught brandishing a carving knife over a very dead Blitz.

For Margo, clearing Ebony’s name is anything but elementary, especially after Ebony flees town. Now Margo is left to play real-life detective in a town full of masked motives, cloaked secrets, and veiled vendettas. But as she soon learns, even a killer disguise can’t hide a murderer in plain sight for long.

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All comments are welcomed.

About the author
After two decades working for a top luxury retailer, Diane Vallere traded fashion accessories for accessories to murder. A Disguise To Die For is the first Costume Shop Mystery. Diane is the vice president of Sisters in Crime, and also writes the Madison Night, Style & Error, and Lefty Award-nominated Material Witness mysteries. She started her own detective agency at age ten and has maintained a passion for shoes, clues, and clothes ever since. Visit Diane at www.dianevallere.com, on Twitter, Pinterest and on Facebook.

Giveaway: Leave comment below for your chance to win a print copy of A Disguise To Die For. US entries only, please. The giveaway will end February 9, 2016 at 12 AM EST. Good luck everyone!

My Musing ~ A Disguise to Die For by Diane Vallere

A Disguise to Die For by Diane Vallere is the first book in the NEW “Costume Shop” mystery series. Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime, February 2016

Disguise To Die ForSomeone is dressed to kill in the debut Costume Shop Mystery from the national bestselling author of the Material Witness mysteries.

No sooner does former magician’s assistant Margo Tamblyn return home to Proper City, Nevada, to run Disguise DeLimit, her family’s costume shop, than she gets her first big order. Wealthy nuisance Blitz Manners needs forty costumes for a detective-themed birthday bash. As for Blitz himself, his Sherlock Holmes is to die for—literally—when, in the middle of the festivities, Margo’s friend and party planner Ebony Welles is caught brandishing a carving knife over a very dead Blitz.

For Margo, clearing Ebony’s name is anything but elementary, especially after Ebony flees town. Now Margo is left to play real-life detective in a town full of masked motives, cloaked secrets, and veiled vendettas. But as she soon learns, even a killer disguise can’t hide a murderer in plain sight for long.

Every time I read a book from Diane I know it’s going to be a fashionable hit and her latest entry is a runway splash. Imagine when the woman who means the world to you becomes a prime suspect, what are you to do? For Margo, it’s to clear her friend’s name and bring a killer to justice.

This was a very enjoyable read and I love how the author’s characterization is developed, so much so that I felt that I was part of the action in this fast-paced drama that quickly became a page-turner as I had to know how this all will play out. The author did a great job in disguising the clues with plenty of suspects, including a killer that was hiding in plain sight. I enjoyed how nicely the mystery was executed with engaging dialogue, a lovable cast of characters, and a perfect backdrop of a costume shop that added to how the story was told, becoming its own player. The humor contained within the pages of this tale was an added bonus. This is a great debut and I look forward to more fashionista adventures with Margo and her friends in the next book in this wonderfully crafted series. Bonus recipes are included.

A Day in the Life of Genevieve Girard by Diane Vallere

Crushed VelvetThat jerk! That jerk of a husband of mine. He wants me to sell my tea recipes to an Italian food distributor. How could he? He knows the whole theme of Tea Totalers is French—that was my dream, to own a French-themed tea shop. I thought he understood. I mean, he always cracks jokes that the only reason I married him was because he had a French last name. When I said I wanted to serve food from France, he probably thought I meant French Fries.

I know he thinks the only reason I’m mad is because of the French/Italian mix-up, but it’s so much more than that. This tea shop is my whole world. You’d think it meant something to him too considering we met at the World Tea Expo. But lately I’ve been thinking that Phil doesn’t care all that much about me and my dreams. He spends more and more time away from home. He said the taxi fares at night are better than during the day, but if he really was doing it for the money, then why was he so eager for me to sell out? And now he’s going to meet with that distributor, I just know he is. That’s why he’s going to Los Angeles tonight instead of tomorrow morning like we’d planned. Los Angeles! Why anybody would want to spend their time in that big city instead of San Ladrón, our nice, quiet, and peaceful town, is beyond me. Even my friend Poly Monroe moved from there to here and she’s happy (but that might be because she’s about to reopen the fabric store.)

I grabbed the jambon and brie (ham and cheese, my aunt fanny!) sandwich that I’d made for Phil’s trip and took a bite, and then another. So much for the thoughtful picnic basket I packed for his trip. I finished the sandwich in four bites and guzzled tea straight from the fresh pitcher that I’d brewed for him too. That’ll show him, I thought. He could get a crummy burger from a drive-thru for all I cared. Maybe that’s what it would take for him to calm down and realize how well I took care of him.

I knew I shouldn’t be mad at Phil. He was just trying to help us make ends meet while Tea Totalers got on solid footing. Feeling guilty about the empty picnic basket, I set about packing a new one and brewing a pitcher of calming tea. That would have to help matter. Sure, Phil complained that the last time I tried this recipe he didn’t feel so well, but I could tweak the recipe. Maybe this time it would turn out differently.


You can read more about Genevieve in Crushed Velvet, the second book in the “Material Witness” mystery series, published by Berkley Prime Crime. The first book in the series is Suede To Rest.

GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment by 12 a.m. eastern on August 17 for the chance to win a print copy of Crushed Velvet. The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. Winner will be notified within 48 hours after giveaway closes and you will have three days to respond after being contacted or another winner will be selected.

About the author
After two decades working for a top luxury retailer, Diane Vallere traded fashion accessories for accessories to murder. CRUSHED VELVET, the second book in the nationally bestselling and Lefty-Nominated Material Witness Cozy Mystery Series, comes out August 4. Diane is the current president of Sisters in Crime Los Angeles, and was co-chair of the 2015 California Crime Writers Conference. She also writes the Madison Night and Style & Error Mystery Series. Diane started her own detective agency at age ten and has maintained a passion for shoes, clues, and clothes ever since.

Visit Diane at www.dianevallere, on Twitter or on Facebook

A Day in the Life with Madison Night by Diane Vallere

With Vics You Get EggrollIt was a hot, humid day. My yellow and blue sundress stuck to my skin, and there wasn’t enough sunscreen in the world to keep from getting burned. Thousands of people milled about, looking for treasures among the emptied out attics and garages, just like me. Besides, it was an excuse to get out of Dallas, where the only talk around town was of the Lakewood Abductor.

“Hold Rocky, would you?” I said to Connie Duncan, my client-turned-friend-turned flea market assistant. I see something I want.” I handed her my squirmy Shih Tzu puppy. He licked the side of her face and then wriggled in her arms until she finally set him down. A lady in pink stretchy yoga clothes was headed the same direction as me. The woman and I reached the back corner of the booth at the same time. She put her hand on the back of a Barcelona chair that had been recovered in black and white zebra fur. I smiled and turned away, distracting myself with a pile of used DVDs that sat on a stack of water-damaged boxes.

The booth owner approached. “You like that chair? It’s Spanish.”

I bit my tongue and looked over my shoulder at the woman in pink. She leaned back into the chair and glanced my way. She knew. She knew I knew. She was checking to see if I was going to ruin things for her.

I winked.

What were the odds? The chair was a classic Mies van der Rohe Barcelona. At a flea market in a small town south of Dallas, Texas. The reason it was called a Barcelona was because it debuted at the Design Exposition in 1929 which was held in Barcelona, not because it was of Spanish design.

“It’s the most valuable thing in my booth,” the seller said proudly. “Two hundred dollars.”

Pink lady stood up. “Sold.”

I flipped through the movies while the seller ran Pink Lady’s credit card (I would have paid cash). Pillow Talk, That Touch of Mink, With Six You Get Eggroll, and about a dozen more. Looked like she had the whole Doris Day collection. The actress, now 91, was something of an inspiration to me. I shared a birthday with her—April 3rd—not to mention a similar appearance. Blond hair, blue eyes, and a vintage wardrobe. Growing up, I’d received one of her movies for each of my birthdays. Now, after just having turned 48, I was an expert on the set design of those movies and had used that knowledge to launch my mid-century modern interior decorating business, Mad for Mod.

“How much for the boxes under the movies?” I asked the seller.

She lit a cigarette and glanced at the damaged boxes scattered about on the ground. “That garbage? I’ll take ten for the lot.”

Two hours later, Connie helped me unload my haul. Eight boxes of new-old-stock tile flooring and a milk crate filled with vintage wallpaper from the fifties. I prided myself on using honest to goodness real mid-century design elements when I redecorated for a client, and that $10 dollar investment would make some client really, really happy.

When we were finished, Connie turned to me. “Ned and I are leaving for Palm Springs for the rest of the summer. Do you want to come? At least until the police catch the guy who kidnapped those women?”

“You guys go. Get inspired and we’ll tackle your den when you’re back.”

“But aren’t you scared to be here alone?”

“I’ll be fine,” I reassured her. “Besides, I’ve already lived through my fifteen minutes of fame. What else could possibly happen?”

Find out what does happen in With Vics You Get Eggroll!


You can read more about Madison in With Vics You Get Eggroll, the third book in the “Mad for Mod” mystery series, published by Henery Press. The first two books in the series are Pillow Talk and That Touch of Ink.

GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment by 12 a.m. eastern on April 27 for the chance to win either a print or an e-book copy of With Vics You Get Eggroll–winner’s choice. The print giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. The e-book giveaway is open to everyone. Winner will be notified within 48 hours after giveaway closes and you will have three days to respond after being contacted or another winner will be selected. Make sure to check your SPAM folder.

About the author
After close to two decades working for a top luxury retailer, Diane Vallere traded fashion accessories for accessories to murder. Diane writes the Mad for Mod, Material Witness, Style & Error, and upcoming Costume Shop cozy mysteries. Diane started her own detective agency at age ten and has maintained a passion for shoes, clues, and clothes ever since. Sign up HERE for her newsletter for contests, news, and giveaways.

Website | Twitter | Facebook

A Day in the Life of Samantha Kidd by Diane Vallere

Some Like it HauteThere are three things you need to know about me:

1. I have questionable judgment
2. I can’t walk away from a challenge
3. I’m not as tough as I pretend to be

If you consider these three things you’ll start to understand why I agreed to help Amanda Ries, my ex-boyfriend’s maybe-former-girlfriend, with her runway show (questionable judgment). You’ll understand why, after I was assaulted in the parking lot outside of said runway show and warned to mind my own business, I was more determined than ever to figure out what was going on (that walking-away-from-a-challenge thing). And you might even see how hard it is for me to put on a brave face while inside, I’m still torn up over my recent breakup with Nick Taylor. (Six weeks, four days, and a handful of hours, not that I’m counting.)

Nick was the one who suggested that Amanda hire me. I have over a decade of experience in the fashion industry, and Amanda was lucky to get me, breakup baggage notwithstanding. While working for her, I spent my days at Warehouse Five acting as liaison between the powers that be while juggling mundane tasks of the “we’re out of Coke Zero” variety.

And then Amanda fired me. Fired by the maybe-former girlfriend? Not. Acceptable. I should have let it go and walked away, but I didn’t. (see point #2). Instead, I finagled a date with a suitably hot photographer and attended her runway show as a patron, watching from the sidelines while one of the outfits burst into flames on the runway.

Fast forward to today. I’d like to say I spent my morning enjoying a cup of coffee before heading out to do some personal shopping for a client. But I’d be lying. In the past twenty-four hours I’ve chopped off my hair, revisited a crime scene, made out with the hot photographer, and witnessed another fire. I’ve found an unlikely ally in the local police detective, whose hands are tied in the investigation because a local arson investigator is calling the shots. And even though nobody else is asking the question, I’d like to know who attacked me, so I’m conducting my own investigation of all parties involved. Which, among others, includes Amanda, the maybe-former girlfriend.

Samantha Kidd, this is your life.


You can read more about Samantha in Some Like It Haute, the fourth book in the “Style & Error” mystery series, published by Polyester Press. The first book in the series is Designer Dirty Laundry.

DV ToteGIVEAWAY: Leave a comment by 6 p.m. eastern on February 3 for the chance to win a copy of SOME LIKE IT HAUTE + a Countdown Tote bag. The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.

About the author
After close to two decades working for a top luxury retailer, Diane Vallere traded fashion accessories for accessories to murder. Some Like It Haute, Style & Error #4, is the first of four books coming out in 2015. In addition, she writes the Mad for Mod, Material Witness, and upcoming Costume Shop cozy mysteries. Diane started her own detective agency at age ten and has maintained a passion for shoes, clues, and clothes ever since. Sign up HERE for her newsletter for contests, news, and giveaways.

Website | Twitter | Facebook

My Musing ~ Suede to Rest by Diane Vallere

Suede To RestSuede to Rest by Diane Vallere is the first book in the new “Material Witness” mystery series. Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime, November 2014

With her career as a dress designer in shreds, Polyester Monroe is looking forward to a fresh start. But as it all unfolds, the pattern to a new beginning looks a lot like murder.

When Poly Monroe was little, she loved playing in her family’s textile store. But after a fatal family tragedy, Land of A Thousand Fabrics was boarded up and Poly never expected to see the inside again. Now, as inheritor of the long-shuttered shop, she’s ready to restore the family business. However her two new kittens, Pins and Needles, aren’t the ones causing a snag in her plans.

Not everyone wants Poly back in San Ladrón, especially a powerful local developer pressuring her to sell—and leave town fast. But even when the threats turn deadly, she’s not ready to bolt. Because Poly is beginning to suspect that the murder behind the shop is tied to a mystery in her family’s unsettled past that she’s determined to solve…before her own life is left hanging by a thread.

I love it. This wonderfully crafted whodunit was a great read that I devoured from beginning to end. The author did a great job in setting up this action-filled drama where the pattern of deceit began to unravel the more the protagonist delved into a case too close to her heart. Who is behind all these incidents? Who’s the stranger lurking in the wind? With a who’s who of suspects, it was fun watching how it all played out with a surprising twist I didn’t see coming. Boasting a friendly cast, engaging dialogue and a place to call home, this was a delightfully pleasant read and I can’t wait to see where the story takes us in the next book.

previously posted on the Cozy Chicks blog