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Mix a splash of Carrie Bradshaw, a dash of Stephanie Plum and a wee bit of Kinsey Millhone and you have Molly Forrester, advice columnist ("You Can Tell Me") for Zeitgeist magazine by day and amateur sleuth by night. At the start of Anderson's debut comic crime novel, Forrester literally steps in it-gooey blood, that is-when she returns to the office late one night and stumbles over a dead coworker. Molly's spanking new Jimmy Choos are covered in blood and she's soon knee-deep in sex, lies and crime-scene tape. Thrown into the fray are a hottie cop named Kyle Edwards; Molly's two gal pals, lawyer Cassady Lynch and event planner Tricia Vincent; and soon-to-be ex-boyfriend Peter Mulcahey, who happens to be a reporter for a rival magazine. Can Molly solve the murder and segue into a serious writing career? Or is using the death of a coworker as a major career move utterly uncouth? ("I always knew I'd make my mark on the world. I just didn't expect it to be one of those chalk outlines they draw around dead bodies.") While Molly explores her options, there's a second murder, and financial irregularities pop up in Zeitgeist's accounting department. Ample laughs help propel a well-crafted plot.
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A pseudonymous husband-and-wife writing team debuts a series sure to please Sex and the City fans. In fact, similarities between Sex heroine Carrie Bradshaw and Anderson's Molly Forrester abound: both are Manhattan columnists who lust after expensive shoes and often pick the wrong man. Like Carrie, Molly has beautiful and wealthy New York sidekicks, Cassady and Tricia, both of whom have plenty of time and money. Molly's rather unexciting job at Zeitgeist magazine heats up when she and Cassady visit the office at night and stumble over the dead body of advertising director Teddy Reynolds. If she can find the killer, Molly will have a story she can peddle to bigger magazines--and thus move up a notch on the career ladder. With Teddy's many mistresses and enemies, however, that will be no easy task. Not helping is Molly's attraction to handsome homicide detective Kyle Edwards. Swanky New York locales and designer accessories abound in this fun if slightly implausible tale. For readers who care more about Prada than police procedure. Jenny McLarin
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