Publication Date: July 1, 2007
Carlotta Wren’s last decade has not been easy. It started with her parents being charged with a crime and going on the run and then her posh fiancé dumping her. She was left to raise her 9-year-old brother, Wesley, and supports them by selling designer clothes at Neiman Marcus. Wesley, at 19, is not the easiest of siblings. When he gets caught hacking a government computer to clear a few fines, Carlotta has had enough. With the attractive Detective Jack Terry on her heels trying to find her parents and working to keep her brother’s loan sharks at bay, the last thing Carlotta needs is for her old rival and wife of her former fiancé who left her to turn up dead. Life, it seems, is not always as you plan.
Stephanie Bond is one of my favorite authors. I bought [easyazon-link asin=”0778324826″ locale=”us”]Body Movers[/easyazon-link] when it was brand-spanking new and simply never got around to reading it. Why, you might ask, would a reader who sought out an author’s back list as a birthday gift to herself, not read a shiny new release sitting right on the bookshelf for five years! I simply cannot answer that. I didn’t get my e-reader until a few years ago and only started my blog last year. I simply dropped the ball on this fabulous series.
Fans of Stephanie Bond may remember Carlotta Wren and her brother, Wesley, from the [easyazon-link asin=”B001PIHRL6″ locale=”us”]Party Crashers[/easyazon-link] novel. I am delighted to see Bond continue with the characters, as [easyazon-link asin=”B001PIHRL6″ locale=”us”]Party Crashers[/easyazon-link] is the one novel in her backlist where I feel that she left readers hanging. What happened to Hannah? Jolie? Carlotta?
Bond expertly draws characters that the readers would want to get to know. Carlotta is a bit wonderful in that all of the age appropriate single men in the novel are enamored by her (those who like the ladies). She’s also quite the enabler when it comes to young Wesley. She is financially unstable and deeply caring for her brother who furthers their financial instability. She is the complete written package. A real character with really bad judgment complicated by really bad luck.
The mystery plot was interesting. While the resolution came a bit out of nowhere, it was logical that Carlotta would be a suspect. What was not logical was how close she was permitted to the crime scenes, especially in light of her potential suspicion. Coop, a disgraced M.E., who moves bodies for his uncle’s funeral home, would only get her so far and never as far as the investigation.
What I didn’t find credible is that a man who is over 30 and married would still be mooning and pining over a woman he dated in high school, no matter how he felt he wronged her. Also hard to believe is that a woman over 30 with the sort of financial challenges that Carlotta had faced, would hold on to a very expensive engagement ring for 10 years. I can see why Peter would play a role in the first novel, but not why Bond would renew the romantic tension when she has two other viable candidates in the wings. Beyond believability, does the character really need three potential beaus?
Despite the 384-page length, [easyazon-link asin=”0778324826″ locale=”us”]Body Movers[/easyazon-link] was a quick and fun read. Be prepared to invest yourself for the long haul on this one. Currently there are six novels in the [easyazon-link asin=”0778324826″ locale=”us”]Body Movers[/easyazon-link] series. I own them all and have already blasted through the second (review pending) and started the third. Whether you read this novel or any other in Bond’s backlist, she is an author worth checking out.
If this sounds like a book for you, read an excerpt and buy Body Movers by Stephanie Bond on: