"The Coziest of Cozy Mysteries, Perfect Reading for the Holidays"
Reviewed by Diana Troldahl
Posted November 24, 2010
Mystery Hobbies | Holiday
Arriving home from an emergency yarn trip for Shedd and
Royal Books and More's new crochet and knitting section,
Molly Pink finds her home surrounded by flashing lights and
crime scene tape. It's coming up on the busiest time of year
for the bookstore, the last thing Pink needs is anything
distracting her from work. Especially as the secret identity
of A. J. Kowalski, author of the immensely popular Vampire
Crochet Romance series is going to be revealed at the
store's big holiday event, to be covered by CNN live feed as
well as reporters from many entertainment shows. Add to that
her new responsibility for setting up the crafting section
at the rear of the store and even Pink is reluctant to get
involved with any police shenanigans. At least until her
neighbor begs her help in finding her missing husband.
Betty Hechtman's fifth Crochet Mystery is peopled with
quirky characters, old and new. The setting on the edge of
Hollywood adds another layer of zaniness to the frenzy of
the holiday season, and Pink's balancing act between two
hunky men continues, with a few new twists. Despite the
surrounding chaos of setting and time of year, Hechtman
slips in lovely moments of calm and introspection as Pink
faces another holiday without her late husband.
YOU BETTER KNOT DIE is the coziest of cozy mysteries,
perfect reading for the holidays. The bonus recipes and
crochet patterns (including one for a Vampire Scarf) are the
whipped cream on the cocoa.
Her crochet group, The Tarzana Hookers, is working overtime
for the holidays-but Molly Pink is having trouble finding
time to crochet so much as a snowflake. The bookstore where
she works is adding a yarn department, and planning a huge
launch party where the mysterious author of a popular series
will reveal his or her true identity. But before the author
appears, another person disappears. The husband of Molly's
neighbor is missing.
When a suicide note arrives, it appears the husband has
jumped off the Catalina Ferry- but Molly smells something
fishy. Despite the protestations of her detective boyfriend,
Molly's soon hooked on unraveling another mystery. She
better watch out-or her sleuthing may get her on someone's
"Pink, youíve got a problem," Adele Abrams said as she
slowed her car in front of my house. I had been crocheting
a snowflake Ė or trying to- while she drove, and it took me
a moment to look up. But when I did Ė
Lots of strange things have gone on at my house, but the
scene that greeted me beat anything Iíd seen before. My
mouth fell open and I dropped the silver hook and white
thread I was holding.
I donít know what was the most shocking. Was it the line
of police cruisers along the curb, the uniform stringing
yellow crime scene tape across the front porch or the group
of uniforms conferring on my front lawn? My house a crime
"What did you do this time?" Adele asked as she pulled to
the curb in front of all the cruisers. Neighbors were
drifting into the street and the kid who lived a few houses
down had his video camera pointed at all the action.
I took a moment to glare at Adele. We had just spent two
days together, which was about a day and a half too much.
Adele and I worked together at Shedd & Royal Books and More
and we were both part of the crochet group, the Tarzana
Hookers, who met at the bookstore. I wouldnít call us
friends exactly, more like family. You pick your friends Ė
you get stuck with family. Instead of answering, I just
shot her a withering look.
A black Crown Victoria roared into my driveway. The car
had barely squeaked to a stop when the door flew open and a
tall man in a suit jumped out. Before I could call out his
name, Barry sprinted across the lawn, breaking through the
yellow tape strung across the porch. He had some kind of
tool in his hand. I heard the splintering of my front door
and a moment later it flew open. I was out of the car by
now, though I didnít get far. One of the uniforms stopped
me and didnít seem to care when I said it was my house.
Adele was out of her side of the car in a flash, almost
catching her jacket on the door. The jacket was part of
what she called a more-subdued look. I wasnít sure what was
subdued about it. Sheíd taken an electric blue ready-made
boxy-style blazer and added kelly green and fuchsia
crocheted trim around the neck, down the front and at the cuffs.
"Pink, you dropped your snowflake." When I turned she
was holding out the ball of white thread, my steel hook and
what appeared to be a tangle of the fine yarn. She glanced
around. "Maybe I better stay here with you." I shook my
head and gestured back toward the car. I didnít know what
was going on, but I did know I didnít want to have Adele in
the middle of it. She hung her head as I got my suitcase
out of the trunk. "Pink, Iíve been youíre backup before.
Címon, let me be part of the action." When I pointed toward
the car again, she went into a full pout, but she finally
got back into the new Matrix station wagon and drove off.
Adele and I were just returning from our trip to San
Diego, which Adele kept referring to as a yarn emergency.
Since our group, the Tarzana Hookers, had become so
connected with the bookstore where I worked, one of the
co-owners, Mrs. Shedd, had recently added a yarn department
to the store. It was still a work-in-progress because Mrs.
Shedd wanted the yarn we sold to be special and high-end
rather than what was sold at the big craft stores. When she
heard about the yarn store closing in San Diego and selling
off their stock, Mrs. Shedd had sent us down there at the
It was just the high-end unusual stuff we were looking
for, and we had packed the back of Adeleís wagon solid with
yarn. The rest was being UPSed up to us. Adding the new
yarn section was good and bad. Good that we were getting
all this wonderful yarn and bad because everything at the
bookstore was already on overdrive due to the upcoming
holidays and our big launch event. Now we had more work
"Did you find the body?" one of the uniforms asked when
Barry returned a few minutes later.
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