No Way to Kill a Lady (Blackbird Sisters Series #8)

No Way to Kill a Lady (Blackbird Sisters Series #8)

4.5 20
by Nancy Martin

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Not much is going right these days for once rich, now impoverished Nora Blackbird—what with her lover under house arrest and her best friend in the slammer. Then Nora and her sisters receive word of a million-dollar inheritance....
Great-aunt Madeleine Blackbird has died in a volcanic eruption on an Indonesian island and left her fabulous Bucks County…  See more details below


Not much is going right these days for once rich, now impoverished Nora Blackbird—what with her lover under house arrest and her best friend in the slammer. Then Nora and her sisters receive word of a million-dollar inheritance....
Great-aunt Madeleine Blackbird has died in a volcanic eruption on an Indonesian island and left her fabulous Bucks County estate to the three Blackbird sisters. But when Nora and her scandal-ridden sisters, Libby and Emma, go to claim their windfall, they find the house in decay and all of their aunt’s to-die-for treasures gone. They also find a woman’s body....

Nora feels compelled to seek out the truth, but even with help from her mobster boyfriend, Mick Abruzzo, who provides distractions both dark and delightful, solving this case proves challenging. Relatives are circling to claim a share of Madeleine’s property, the suspect list is growing, and Nora’s wild and wacky sisters are adding one surprise after another. It’s enough to put Nora’s couture undies in a serious twist!

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Like any family old enough to have its own “Washington slept here” story, Philadelphia’s Blackbirds have plenty of skeletons in the closet—but right now it’s the newly discovered one in an elevator that concerns society columnist Nora and her sisters at the outset of Martin’s eighth cozy to feature the madcap Main Line clan (after 2008’s Murder Melts in Your Mouth). And that’s not the only nasty surprise levelheaded Nora, lusty Libby, and a very pregnant Emma encounter during their first visit in decades to Quintain, the decaying estate they have just inherited from their late globe-trotting great-aunt, Madeleine—almost everything of value has vanished from the property. Add to the mix Madeleine’s lecherous and possibly larcenous lawyer, Simon Groatley; the sisters’ smarmy cousin, Sutherland; Nora’s Mafia prince love, Michael “Mick” Abruzzo; assorted ponies and one very endearing pig, and you have the makings for a fizzy, entertaining adventure. Agent: Meg Ruley, Jane Rotrosen Agency. (Aug.)
From the Publisher
Praise for the Blackbird Sisters Mysteries

“Smart intrigue dressed in cool couture.”-New York Times bestselling author Susan Andersen

“Martin knows the inner workings of blue-blooded Philadelphia.”-New York Times bestselling author Margaret Maron

“It's always a joy to see what those flawed and feisty Blackbird sisters are up to.”-Agatha and Anthony Award-winning author Rhys Bowen

“A fizzy, entertaining adventure.”-Publishers Weekly

VOYA - Barbara Allen
In this latest installment of the Blackbird Sisters Mysteries, Nora and her two sisters have inherited a sprawling estate from an eccentric aunt. When they are touring the grounds, which are oddly empty, a body is discovered in the elevator. When Nora returns to her beloved Blackbird Farm, she discovers that her gangster boyfriend, Michael, is being released from prison on house arrest. She is also dealing with her pregnant sister and all her suitors. What is a society reporter to do? Her cousin also wants the estate for his own devices, and her aunt’s lawyer seems to be up to something. Nora, Libby, and Emma must figure out if the rumors about their aunt are true; who the body is in the elevator; and who took the ledger that might be the key to the entire thing. This is an adult novel that is appropriate for older teens. There are mentions of sex, drugs, and criminal activities, but nothing is explicit. While it is a cute story, there is more drama than mystery. We do not even have a mystery until well into the book. Most of the book is about family issues, not finding out who the dead body is or what Aunt Madeline actually did in her castle-like estate. Overall, it is not a bad novel, just not really a very good mystery. Ages 15 to Adult.
Library Journal
The high-society Blackbird sisters swoop back in their eighth madcap case (after 2008's Murder Melts in Your Mouth) when their great-aunt dies and leaves them an inheritance hiding a grisly secret.
Kirkus Reviews
The death of her great-aunt sends Philadelphia socialite Nora Blackbird (Murder Melts in Your Mouth, 2008, etc.) into a nicely accessorized tizzy. It's not easy running Blackbird Farm, her family's sprawling Main Line estate, on her salary as a society-page reporter. Not even with the help of her pregnant sister, Emma, who supplements their income giving riding lessons, or the encouragement of her ditzy sister, Libby, whose attempts to raise five children and post pictures of her latest pedicure to her website, PitterPat, leave her no time to actually earn money. So Nora is overjoyed to learn that her great-aunt, "Madcap" Madeleine Blackbird, left her estate to the three sisters and their cousin, Sutherland. Unfortunately, her trip back to Quintain reveals the mansion stripped of all the glittering treasures Nora remembers from her childhood visits. But worse than what's gone is what's been added: a skeletonized corpse trapped in the elevator. While Sutherland tries in vain to seduce Nora into a partnership that will consolidate his hold over their joint inheritance, Nora slips a Dior spring jacket over her vintage lace suit and hits the charity fundraiser circuit, hoping that someone from Maddie's flamboyant past can ID the deceased. But her boyfriend, repentant mobster Michael "Mick" Abruzzo, is not the kind who can let a lace suit pass unnoticed, particularly when it encases his shapely paramour. Will Mick's release from prison to house arrest at Blackbird Farm distract Nora from her mission, or will his connections help her solve the puzzle from the past? Slightly gamer than in her earlier exploits, Nora steps closer to the plate in Martin's latest outing.

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Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Blackbird Sisters Series , #8
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Sales rank:
File size:
740 KB
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
Praise for the Blackbird Sisters Mysteries

“Smart intrigue dressed in cool couture.”—New York Times bestselling author Susan Andersen

“Martin knows the inner workings of blue-blooded Philadelphia.”—New York Times bestselling author Margaret Maron

“It’s always a joy to see what those flawed and feisty Blackbird sisters are up to.”—Agatha and Anthony Award–winning author Rhys Bowen

“A fizzy, entertaining adventure.”—Publishers Weekly

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No Way to Kill a Lady: A Blackbird Sisters Mystery 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
SharonRedfern More than 1 year ago
In Nancy Martin’s long awaited eighth book in the Blackbird Sisters Mysteries, it looks like things are looking up for the sisters. Forced to live in genteel poverty since their parents absconded with their trust funds, news that they inherited their Aunt Madeleine’s estate seems the answer to their prayers. Life is complicated for the sister, Nora’s lover, Michael, is in jail, Emma is pregnant with no chance of marrying the father and Libby is ….well, Libby. When they get to the site of the mansion, they discover that the house is a wreck, all of the valuables are missing and to top it off, they find skeletal remains in the elevator. Add to the mix a smarmy cousin, Sutherland, who might contest the will, and it’s obvious that this is not going to be the answer to the sister’s problems. There is some good news, Michael is released to the Blackbird farm on supervised home release but that means his thuggish entourage also will be on the premises. Michael has another surprise for her, but it’s a big surprise for him as well. Nora works on finding out what happened to her aunt, clearing her aunt’s name after salacious rumors surface, and finding out what happened to all of the pilfered items from the house. Nora uses her job as a society columnist to get information about her aunt’s history and finding out who would have had access to the estate. Her aunt’s lecherous lawyer seems pretty suspicious and there are a few society matrons who were very jealous of Aunt Madeleine and would have been happy to see her gone. I have always enjoyed this series because of all the different threads that run through every story. I love the insider look at mainline society and the descriptions of the vintage outfits Nora wears to events. The contrast between that life and the mob family connections of Michael’s has led to problems in the relationship in the past but in this book they seem to be on a pretty even keel. Emma’s pregnancy is stressing her out physically and mentally and the off/on relationship with the father does not help. Libby is convinced her toddler son is destined for athletic superstardom and is still on the prowl for anything in pants. Nora has a full plate of craziness to deal with and Michael is her anchor even with his problems. They are perfect together even though their life is still unsettled. If you have been a fan of this series, you will love this book. The biggest problem will be waiting for the next one to come!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
All of the Blackbird sister books are worth reading. Light Mysteries with wry humor with a fun family to keep up with.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
No Way to Kill a Lady is filled with likable characters. It is a fun, lighthearted mystery that made me laugh out loud several times.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
That's all these are. Pure, unadulterated fun. No deep messages, but a great way to spend your time while curled up with your pet and your favorite loungewear.
penandbrush7 More than 1 year ago
8th in her Blackbird Sisters series & this one's full of red herrings & intriguing subplots. Love the characters; love the setting.  Fun stuff. And kudos to Hiro Kimura for his eye-catching covers. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
girlandhernook More than 1 year ago
No Way To Kill a Lady is the eighth book in the Blackbird Mystery Series. This series went on hiatus for a few years. Although the seventh book ended on an almost perfect note, I was more than happy to pick this book up. Nora, the lead sister, has her life in upheaval. Both of her sisters live fairly messed up lives. Her husband is in jail (mob connections) and she has a knack for finding dead bodies. This is no different. Once again Nora finds a dead body. Nora's personal life also comes into this story more than previous books in this series. Nora not only has to deal with her two sisters, she is dealing with long lost family members, that pesky estate where Nora found the dead body and Mick. Oh Mick, her husband. Mick gets out of jail early (yay!), Mick is on house arrest (boo! This will drive Mick and in turn Nora crazy), and Mick is dealing with a few problems of his own. This isn't to say that the story runs amok, because it doesn't. Martin's writing is strong as ever, better, one could say, and the fact that I've recently been to the Philadelphia area makes this book even more `real' to me. But that trip to Philadelphia isn't necessary. Promise. Martin uses the fact that Nora is an ex-society lady and now covering events to bring Philadelphia to life. I've read this book series since almost the beginning. Martin does an excellent job and makes this book, the eighth in the series, easy to pick up as a first book. I will also be honest with you, I read this book for Mick. He's a bad boy. Sadly he is a bad boy who loves Nora with all of his heart. This doesn't mean that he isn't on my book crush list. Yes, I have one. You know you have one. Originally posted at Nose in a Book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have enjoyed all of the books in this series. They are a light read, something that is just right at times, but a good read. Martin went on to other characters for a while but I enjoy this cast of characters better. If you are new to the Blackbird Sisters, I will suggest you start at the beginning as she pulls some story lines from previous books, especially involving their personal lives.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you enjoy the Blackbird sisters, this is a great addition to the family. It moved the story along well and left me looking forward to the next one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I gtg. Buenas noches, Cal. *hugs her and goes*
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed reading about the Blackbird sisters. It is also a good mystery.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
SueR58 More than 1 year ago
Having read all the rest of the Blackbird Sisters books, I was beyond excited when this one came out. IT was a great read with very very funny parts. I think this is my favorite of them all so far. Can't wait for the next one to come out!!!!!
TexasYankee More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! I have read all the books in the series and by far this was the most humorous! I was laughing so hard I woke the dog up. Ralphie is a great character and is a good fit with Nick.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
DAinNY1 More than 1 year ago
It’s been four long years, but the Blackbird Sisters are back and I love it. Nora, Libby and Emma just inherited their aunt’s property only to discover that someone has absconded with all the valuable property and left the house in ruins. It soon appears that something nefarious has happened within the walls of Quintain and the sisters with Nora leading the way are determined to unearth the truth. This was a fun read that I enjoyed immensely in this cleverly written mystery. The Blackbird sisters are as madcap as ever and at their best in this easy-flowing and charming whodunit and along the way, we meet an aging gigolo cousin, a crooked lawyer and Ralphie who is so adorable. Mick is home and lends a helping hand in this delightfully entertaining adventure. This is the best book yet in this fabulous series and I can’t wait for more good times with the Blackbird sisters.
PaulaFarrell More than 1 year ago
Things aren't going well for Nora, the love of her life Mick, and her best friend are both incarcerated, her sisters are still driving her crazy and her parents have taken off again. Than comes word that Great Aunt Madeline has passed away, and the real adventure begins. There are a few twists and turns and an unexpected dead body (of course!), but the end result is an outstanding 8th outing for Nancy Martin's Blackbird Sisters Series. Do yourselves a favor and add this one to your 2012 summer MUST READ list, you will not be disappointed ... well except for the nagging problem of waiting for the next one!
LibraryMom4 More than 1 year ago
You can read the above reviews about this wonderful Blackbird Sister book! This is a wonderfulky written series. Nancy Martin has doneit again. The Blackbird Sisters continue with their personal dramas and try to figure out what happened to their deceased aunt and her estate. If you like humor, society living, haute couture and mystery, then this is a must read! So happy this series is being continued. Thank you!!