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No Way to Kill a Lady
Blackbird Sisters Mystery Series #8
Nancy Martin

Obsidian / NAL / Penguin
August 2012/ 978-0-451-23705-7

Reviewed by Laura Hinds

It's been quite some time since author Nancy Martin graced her readers with a new Blackbird Sisters Mystery. As a long- time fan of this series I've been on pins and needles waiting for No Way to Kill a Lady for ages. When assigned to review it, I was beyond excited. The book arrived, and I savored the new book smell, the elegant cover that portrays the main character Nora perfectly, and I knew I had to have a nice block of free time to read the whole book. Yet I loved the story so much I changed my plans and read it over the course of two days, simply for the joy of stretching the latest Blackbird sisters' adventure out.

Things remain in flux for Nora Blackbird and paramour Mick Abruzzo. Mick is out of prison, wearing an ankle monitor and trying his best to remove himself from his "family business." Nick has also discovered that his biological family has expanded. A 19 year old daughter who he did not know existed has just entered his life. Nora is dealing with her sisters, Libby and Emma, who have challenges of their own and turn to Nora to be the voice of reason and make the hard decisions.

The Blackbird sisters have been left a legacy from their deceased great-aunt Madeleine. They are to inherit her estate worth millions of dollars. Yet things can't go that easily for the Blackbirds. The estate is in disrepair, practically ruins. Valuable items are missing. There's a long dead body in the elevator of the house. There are bones found on a neighboring property. A cousin who wants his fair share, and the nagging doubt about whether Madeline aka Madcap Maddy was in fact a Mayflower Madam add to the mystery.

No Way to Kill a Lady is a fabulous book, sure to charm readers who love a well-crafted plot giving you an inside look at a dysfunctional family, who pull together to support each other come heck or high water. Fashionistas and socialites will be delighted to read about Nora's wardrobe and the parties she attends. Cozy mystery readers can't go wrong with this series full of true to life characters that live their lives closely knit to each other and to the fullest in over- the- top ways. Those who seek romance and sex will not be disappointed either! The Blackbird women are sexual creatures, one might even consider them sex-pots, but there is no graphic sex, nor is there graphic violence, making the book appropriate for teens on up.

You'll want to go along for the ride to find out what happens and savor each character along the way. I'm hoping Ralphie shows up in future books too! You'll have to get this book to find out who Ralphie is!

Reviews of other titles in this series

Cross Your Heart and Hope to Die #4
Have Your Cake and Kill Him Too #5
Murder Melts in Your Mouth #7
Drop-Dead Blonde - Nancy Martin, Elaine Viets, Denise Swanson, Victoria Laurie

Reviewer Laura Hinds is the author of Are You Gonna Eat That Banana?
Reviewed 2012