by Jennifer Crusie
Publication Date: August 21, 2007
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
I recently read Wild Ride by the same two authors for a Halloween Bingo square, and it made me want to re-read my very favorite Crusie of all time. I reviewed it back in 2014, which can be found here, but even then it was a re-read and I don’t have any notes from my original reading.
But it really doesn’t matter, because this book is just as good the 5 or 6th time as it was the first time. Hilarious, not at all realistic, yet believable, and at its heart, endearingly sweet in a way that only a mafia related killing spree can be.
Agnes is engaged and they’ve bought the house of her dreams from her BFF’s mother, where she and her soon-to-be are going to write cookbooks and cater fabulous events. The first event is part of the mortgage contract: throw a fabulous wedding at the house for Agnes’ goddaughter and the previous owner’s grand-daughter in exchange for the first 3 months of payments.
Easy, until someone comes in one night to steal her dog at gunpoint. Agnes, who has a history of anger management issues, hits him with a frying pan, knocking him through the wall into an unknown (to her) basement. She calls her old friend Joey (the Gent) who, hearing what happened and seeing the basement, calls in his nephew, Shane, a government black-op. He comes to protect Agnes and find out who wants the dog, and why.
Meanwhile, the bride’s grand-mother seems determined to relocate the wedding to the country club, and everything that can go wrong with the wedding preparations does. Through it all Agnes just keeps cooking and planning and fixing, refusing to allow anything to stand in her way of having this wedding, not even the dead bodies.
It’s a fast paced read, with no slow spots. It’s a huge amount of fun, and as I said before it’s not at all realistic, but the relationships are feel believable. Even the instant attraction between Shane and Agnes. I continue to absolutely love this book as one of the ultimate comfort reads on my shelves.
I re-read this just because I wanted to, but it fits for Halloween Bingo’s Terror in a Small Town square, so I’m going with that. It’s set in Keyes, South Carolina a tiny (fictional) town that’s home to half the Jersey mob’s family (the retired half) and is beset with a string of murders that leaves a body count somewhere around 7.