Martha Stewart meets Nancy Drew
Jo Tulip has just been jilted at the altar and been involved in murder investigation, all in the same day. Her best friend Danny (who's secretly in love with her) gets Jo to come to the crime scene of an elderly woman who turns up mysteriously dead in her own home. The police rule it as an accident but with Jo's knack for household tips, she discovers it to be a murder. Theft, fraud, the deceiving of old ladies, and alchemy all come into play to as Jo and Danny try to discover the truth about really happened.
This was my first Mindy Starns Clark book and I really got a kick out of it. I loved all the household advice spread throughout the novel. Very interesting techniques given how to combat any home problem. I have yet to try out any but I may do so in the future. The murder investigation was really gutsy of Jo to do it mostly by herself. There were a lot of twists I wasn't expecting. I really Jo's character. I do hope we get a full confrontation with Bradford. The guy is a jerk. She should be happy she didn't marry him, what a wimp. I also hope Jo can work out her relationship with her parents. It'll also be interesting to see how Jo's and Danny's future will work itself out.
I really liked the letters from the advice column. I found it funny that the writers of the letters always seemed to be clueless about the situations they were writing about. I guess housewives from back then really were in the dark? Great book, great mystery, and good fun read.
The Trouble With Tulip by Mindy Starns Clark is published by Harvest House (2005)