A working girl is found dead in the desert. Can a calendar girl uncover the truth?
In this award-winning prequel to GETTING OFF ON FRANK SINATRA, it’s Christmastime in Sin City. Aspiring journalist Copper Black meets Victoria McKimber, an outspoken prostitute at one of Nevada’s legal brothels. She’s offered Copper the exclusive right to tell her story. Not only will the Las Vegas Light’s “calendar girl” get a byline, but she can also impress her boyfriend and parents when they arrive for the holidays.
Copper is busy with work, Christmas shopping, and fantasizing about a whole week with her long-distance boyfriend. She’s also helping her brother, a civic-minded pastor who is spearheading plans for a new center to serve the homeless. Things are hectic but under control when shocking news breaks. Victoria McKimber has turned up dead.
As she investigates the violent death, Copper evades enemies, juggles boyfriend, work, and family, and races against time to save her brother from a sinister plot. Unless she can expose the truth about Victoria McKimber, somebody just might get away with murder.
About the Author
Megan Edwards is the award-winning author of FULL SERVICE BLONDE, GETTING OFF ON FRANK SINATRA, and STRINGS: A LOVE STORY. All three novels were first-place winners of Benjamin Franklin book awards in 2018. Edwards is also the author of ROADS FROM THE ASHES: AN ODYSSEY IN REAL LIFE ON THE VIRTUAL FRONTIER, a memoir of her five-year adventure living and working on the road during the dawn of the Internet. At home in Las Vegas, Nevada, where there's never a shortage of fascinating material and inspiration, Edwards is working on her next novel.
Read an Excerpt
Friday, December 9
I carry business cards that read “Copper Black, Assistant Editor.” To my parents, they’re reassuring proof I’m a bona fide journalist, but what my title really means is that I update show listings and bring caffe lattes to Chris Farr, the arts and entertainment editor. But my parents are in Connecticut, where it’s far more satisfying to imagine me interviewing celebrities.
“Copper,” my mother will say on the phone, “I read that Bill Clinton was in Las Vegas last week. Did you meet him?”
No, Mom. I was standing in line at Starbucks.
Not that I haven’t learned a lot in my nearly eight months in Las Vegas. I know about high pollen counts and flash floods, the shortage of obstetricians, and the abundance of Mormon churches. I’m an expert at giving and following directions using casinos as landmarks. I know that when real Nevadans said “Nevada,” the VAD rhymes with MAD. Only newscasters broadcasting from Rockefeller Center say Ne-VAH-da. Well, I used to, too, but I’ve acclimatized.
Even so, I still have a lot to learn, even about subjects as ordinary as the good old-fashioned Yellow Pages. Remember those big fat books we used to use as booster seats and doorstops? I thought they had died out along with phone booths, but there’s a whole bookcase full of them at The Light. They’ve been relegated to the far side of the lunchroom, probably their last stop on the road to extinction, but there they are. I was eating lunch alone that Friday, so out of curiosity, I pulled one out to keep me and my ramen noodles company. I had just returned to my table when a familiar but unwelcome raspy voice fell on my ears.
“Hey, blondie, help me out and turn to ‘Entertainers’ in the Yellow Pages you’ve got there.”
I looked up to see Ed Bramlett leering at me from his usual spot near the windows. He covers business at The Light. Next to him, wearing a similar expression, was J.C. Dillon, who has the local government beat. They both have at least thirty years on me, and they liked nothing better than to see me blush. When I first arrived, they could turn me crimson in a matter of moments, but I’ve toughened up.
“It’s Copper,” I said, looking back down. “Do you need some entertainment, Ed?” I hoped I sounded sufficiently sarcastic.
“Not when I have you, sweetie,” Ed said. J.C. emitted a snort that was supposed to pass for a laugh.
I should have ignored them, but I flipped to the “E” section. I know now that I should not have been expecting discreet ads for piano players, but I was still a Vegas newbie.
“FULL SERVICE BLONDES,” read the three-inch headline staring me in the face. I looked up, and Ed smiled triumphantly as I felt my cheeks warming. I am the world’s fastest blusher, and I was glad I had worn my hair long that day. It covered my ears, which always heat up even more violently than my face. But I wasn’t embarrassed. I was angry. Ed had succeeded in turning me red again.
“It means they bring you coffee,” Ed said, and J.C. snorted again. I slapped the phone book shut. Clutching it in one hand and my cup of noodles in the other, I stalked out of the lunchroom.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (01/18) “Full Service Blonde” is the second book in the Copper Black Mystery series by Megan Edwards. Fresh out of college, gorgeous Copper Black has relocated to Las Vegas with the hopes of getting her journalism career going. Intrigued by the opportunity to interview a prostitute from a brothel, named Victoria, Copper jumps at the chance. Shortly after Copper attends a pagan ceremony with her, she is dismayed to discover that Victoria has been murdered. To solve the mystery of who murdered Victoria, Copper enlists the aid of an attractive coworker named David. After her apartment is ransacked, she finds herself really needing his help. Her attraction to David can't go anywhere, because her boyfriend is heading to town for the holidays, which they are going to share with Copper's family. Things get even more interesting when she discovers that someone is trying to screw a family member over in a business deal. She also learns something about her parents that has a huge impact on her relationship with them. Copper has a lot to juggle all at once. Unfortunately, something is going to have to give. I loved this fast-paced murder mystery. Full of eccentric characters and twists in the storyline, “Full Service Blonde” provides the reader with a great escape to Las Vegas, without having to get off the couch. I loved how the author managed to keep me on my toes with unexpected surprises. The characters are quite entertaining. Giving Copper two hot men in her life also added to the fun. Even if she chose to be faithful, the sexual tension was still obvious and totally enjoyable. Being that it is known as Sin City, Las Vegas is the perfect setting for this adventure. “Full Service Blonde” by Megan Edwards is a prequel to “Getting Off on Frank Sinatra,” in the Copper Black Mystery series. I would recommend getting both books so that you have the next one ready to go. I wish I did! I also recommend this book for a reader's group. It will definitely stimulate some lively conversations!