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on June 27, 2003
In this 6th book in the Mandy Dyer mysteries series involving a dry-cleaner who helps solve mysteries, Mandy finds herself as the proud new owner of a bunch of old clothes. It seems that a long-time customer has left them to Mandy after her death, and Mandy struggles to determine why this customer left her such a large bunch of ragtag clothing. During her search through the bags of clothes, Mandy discovers that sewn on several garments is a huge collection of buttons, some of which may be valuable. Thinking of the suspicious nature of her deceased customer's death and the potential value of this button collection, Mandy envisions a possible murder plot. Mandy sets out to determine if homicide was the case of death, and who the killer could be. Also included in this mystery is a possible new love interest for Mandy (she finally has broken off her relationship with Stan, the old cop boyfriend from previous novels) that sparks old feelings from the past.
I enjoyed the latest book in this series and was surprised at the killer's identity. The information regarding button collecting was interesting, informative, and added nicely to the mystery. I also was happy to see that Stan was mostly absent in this case, as he was not a supportive character for Mandy's inquisitive nature. This is an excellent book to read even if you have not read previous books in the series.
The first book in this series is "Taken to the Cleaners".
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on October 18, 2002
I love this series. Dolores Johnson is one of the few authors I will buy in hardback. I like her humor, her characters and the mystery she creates. I rank her with Laurien Berenson,Rhett MacPherson, Susan Cooper Rogers, Edie Clare..... I can't wait for the next book in the series. Thank you, Ms. Johnson, for introducing another love interest for Mandy. (I never did like Stan). Don't pass up this fun series.
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on August 8, 2002
I've been waiting a long time for BUTTONS AND FOES, the latest Mandy Dyer drycleaning mystery, and I wasn't disappointed. BUTTONS AND FOES is a fun mystery with a treasure hunt thrown into the mix, and this time Mandy bumps into a potential love interest who promises to add a bit of steam to the series.
Good work, Dolores Johnson! I can't wait for the next Mandy book.
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on August 8, 2002
Mandy Dyer, owner of a Denver dry cleaning company, is surprised to inherit two trash bags filled with clothing no one would want. In her will octogenarian customer Thelma Chadwick left the bags of clothing to Mandy. More of a shock than the bags to Mandy is how Thelma died. The elderly woman fell down the stairs leading to her basement. Considering that Thelma never used the stairs because of her arthritis coupled with the fact that the deceased complained about a prowler leads the successful amateur sleuth to conclude that someone killed her friend.

Mandy notices the odd variety of non-matching designer buttons sewed onto the dresses. Wondering if there is value to the buttons, Mandy makes inquires into button collecting, which turns out to be a very popular hobby with several local clubs. Over the objections of her plant manager Nat Wilcox she also begins investigating Thelma's neighbors and her dearly departed customer's sleazy California relatives.

The latest Mandy Dyer investigative tale is an entertaining amusing amateur sleuth novel. The story line is fun though the audience will need to overcome the hurdle (shared by most sub-genre books) of why Mandy would conduct any inquiries into Thelma's death especially when the dry cleaner's life seems threatened. Still, readers will want to take that leap because BUTTONS & FOES showcases Mandy at her inquisitive best and provides a new romantic entry for the heroine. With this novel and series, Dolores Johnson takes her audience to the cleaners, which fans will welcome the spin.

Harriet Klausner
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