The Scent of Lies by Debra Burroughs is part of the Paradise Valley Mysteries and it was hard to decide if I should write a review of each book or of the whole set. But since every story has a strong plot and enough meat to deserve their own space, I am going with separate reviews.
I got these books as an anthology or boxed set and read them back to back, which was actually quite enjoyable. The books, or one giant book, are set in a small town called Paradise Valley somewhere in Idaho. We are introduced to Emily Parker, recently widowed and at a lose end. Emily’s husband was a PI and was killed by persons unknown. Emily discovers the name of a woman in her husband’s jacket, and takes it upon herself to find that woman. Said woman hires her to tail her husband. Emily is motivated to set her past straight and decides to become a PI herself. She confirms that Delia’s husband is indeed a cheat, but before she can find out more, he is killed in his own home.
Connor is a new detective in Paradise Valley. He has moved from California to get over a troubled past. Sparks fly when he meets Emily, and he is in deep before he knows what hit him. Emily’s friends are her staunch support group, right from the fitness trainer single mother to the older chef. I loved reading about all the gal things they do, the way they hang out, have potlucks and lunches and look out for each other. In my opinion, this adds a human element to an otherwise run of the mill mystery or detective story. Emily’s relationship with her husband, her feelings for the new guy and her friends are a common theme across this series, and are part of a main plot.
The Scent of Lies may not be the best as far as suspense or intrigue goes. Some might say the mystery is not deep enough and is a bit predictable. But the characters are full of life and such that anyone can relate to them. Grab The Scent of Lies today. While you’re at it, get the whole set and read it back to back.
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