Blake's best friend, Vivi, has been caught in the middle of a scandal. Vivi's discreet affair with Lewis, Blake's brother-in-law, is made public when he winds up dead - smack dab in the middle of one of their rendezvous. Now it's up to lawyer Blake and her lawyer husband to get Vivi out of this pickle (which no good Southern belle should ever find herself in). But with the right amount of sass, the right friends and a strand of pearls, a true Southern belle can overcome anything; even that pesky high-school flame that happens to be the lead detective on the case.
My take: There's something special about "The Sassy Belles" by Beth Albright. The characters, family and setting she creates is vivid and real and puts you there in the story from page one. I've never been to Tuscaloosa, Ala., but I'm sure that if I were to get off a plane there today, it'd feel like I'd been there all my life. And that's exactly what Albright was striving for, I'm sure.
The sense of humor that's special to the South (I had no idea pearl necklaces were for fashion AND choking) comes through loud and clear and made me laugh out loud several times. Albright takes special care with each of her characters to make sure they're independent of each other and authentic. After reading her debut novel, I wanted best friends like Blake O'Hara and Vivi McFadden. And who wouldn't want a fiery grandmother like Mother? "The Sassy Belles" is a fun, quick, summer read filled with sass, humor, mystery and romance. Not once was it dull or did it drag; the pace kept the book moving nicely.
Albright's storytelling is strong, and her weaving of mystery and twists is masterful. There's a sense of belonging, family and home between the covers that I can't wait to get more of in her next book, "Wedding Belles."
My rating: A must read for summer fun.