Smith and Westen Cozy Mystery Series by Cindy Davis
On The Hook (Smith and Westen Mysteries Book One) by Cindy Davis
A Picasso painting, worth a hundred million dollars, disappears en route from Chicago to New Hampshire. Literally-en route. The painting goes missing while the truck is moving. The painting is there, then it’s not. It’s gone, but it can’t be. Kendra Jean Valentine, underwriting agent for the policy, is on the hook. She scrapes together enough to hire two women to work the case.
Westen Hughes owns a failing pet shop. With creditors phoning daily, she jumps at the chance to earn a bundle of easy money, even though the offer comes from her old nemesis KJ Valentine, who stole everything in high school: head cheerleader, homecoming queen and the star quarterback. KJ pairs her with Westen’s total opposite: Phoebe Smith, a snake-loving, underwear-hating, tuba player with more baggage than Logan Airport.
Ten percent of a hundred million is…well, it’s a lot so Smith and Westen join forces on a roller coaster ride to find one of the world’s most valuable paintings.
Cold Coffee 5 Star Review: Transporting hundred million-dollar valuables by vehicle presents many challenges as Kendra Jean Valentine, agent for NH Property and Casualty Insurance well knows. Her job requires that she covers all bases. This job was no different from the others. She chose the trucking company, interviewed the two truck drivers and handpicked four security guards to drive in two separate vehicles, one in front and one behind the truck to assist her in driving from Chicago to Buffalo and then non-stop from Buffalo to Concord, New Hampshire.
Arriving at their destination Kendra is relieved to arrive and more than happy to turn Picasso’s The Old Guitarist painting over to the curator, Henderson McGee. The painting was secured and padlocked in a six-foot cube wooden crate. Only Kendra and the curator in Chicago had the keys. When the crate in opened the painting is not inside and Kendra is on the hook. Her exact thought “How was it possible for so many things to go wrong for one person at the same time? She must’ve done something really awful in a past life.”
With strong characters and good dialog, the reader is submerged into a fast-paced mystery that is led by two untrained, inexperienced and incompatible women named Smith and Weston. Out of their league these two sleuths find themselves in many situations. I quote one from page # 103 in my copy.
“Smith and Westen started up the walk side-by-side. Westen twisted the antique glass doorknob and they went in, footsteps thudding on the bare hardwood floor, stained by at least fifty years of shoes and boots. The place smelled like a combination of pine cleaner which obviously hadn’t been used in the hallway and vanilla scented candle. They climbed the steep stairs. Westen tried not to touch the railing. She hadn’t brought any hand sanitizer.”
Well written mystery by Author Cindy Davis that will keep you guessing until the end.
I endorse On The Hook (Volume 1) in the Smith and Westen Mysteries. After you read On The Hook, Just Smashing (Volume 2) and Two Million Reasons (Volume 3) are waiting for you to solve. I reviewed this book from a Kindle/PDF format and the review was completed on September 29, 2015.
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Just Smashing (Smith and Westen Mysteries Book Two) by Cindy Davis
New England’s most mismatched investigative team is on the trail of an Egyptian vase worth $1.75 million.
The ink is barely dry on snake-lover Phoebe Smith and Susie Homemaker Westen Hughes’ licenses. Their bank accounts are bursting from their previous windfall, yet they’re anxious to get back to work. Then the call comes.
During the unveiling of a local college’s exhibit, the vase disappeared in front of seven people.
Well, six people and the thief, because sure as shortcake has strawberries, the vase is there one minute, the gone the next.
Secrets rather than clues cause more trouble than fifty Dennis the Menaces.
The mega-rich Enrique Vargas’ money is rumored to have come from smuggling artifacts. His paramour-de-month is model-thin Fiona Frost; the only job she ever had was a prostitute. Then there is Donald Abbott, dealer in ancient weapons, particularly Egyptian ones. The always-smiling Sophie Oliver has no visible means of support.
How did the theft happen right under the nose of the security guard?
Dana Thornton is head of the exhibit’s security, a job that could grow to include the whole campus if he plays his cards right. Or can come up with enough money for the equipment.
Smith and Westen not only dodge threats and physical attacks by the suspects…
But need to stay one step ahead of KJ, who’s determined to find the vase and cash in on the 10% finder’s fee.
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Two Million Reasons (Smith and Westen Mysteries Book Three) by Cindy Davis
Magician Gabe Heinz has two million reasons to disappear.
He is in the middle of his vanishing act when he does just that—vanish before a sell-out crowd—along with two million in securities from the bank where he’s vice president. His daughter is distraught—and a prime suspect—not just by the FBI, but by her nagging shrew of a mother.
Insurance recovery team Smith and Westen are up to their ears in movers determined to demolish every stick of furniture in their new home.
It’s almost a relief when a recovery job takes them to Los Angeles.
Hunky bodyguard Ryan Ames is supposed to meet them at LAX.
Instead, a gun-wielding lunkhead with a fondness for roughing up women escorts them to a mobster who claims they now work for him.
They can protect Vicki—but from the cops, or her mother?
When they locate the securities—and they’d better, or else—can they keep them from the mobster?
Genre: Cozy Mystery
About Author Cindy Davis
Multi-Genre Published Author Residing In Florida
Cindy Davis is the author of 22 mysteries and romantic suspense novels, and several non-fiction books.
She’s a 20-year veteran free-lance editor, and a recent transplant to the land of sunshine where she can be outdoors twelve months of the year rather than the four or five in New England.
Cindy and her new husband Rick do a lot of hiking and swimming. They like to travel–next on the bucket list is Italy. The last trip to Rome produced a novel Lethal Dose of Revenge (being marketed now) which made it TAX DEDUCTIBLE!
Personally, she’s addicted to coffee–particularly chocolate raspberry flavor. And don’t anyone dare get between her and her life-loves: Ben & Jerry. Other than that, she’s pretty laid back.
She is an award-winning freelance editor who’s worked in both fiction and nonfiction with over a thousand authors.
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