Paint the Town Dead (Silver Six Series #2)

Paint the Town Dead (Silver Six Series #2)

by Nancy Haddock

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780698165052
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 09/06/2016
Series: Silver Six Series , #2
Sold by: Penguin Group
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 42,946
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

Nancy Haddock is the national bestselling author of Basket Case, the debut novel in the Silver Six mysteries, as well as the paranormal novels La Vida Vampire, Last Vampire Standing, and Always the Vampire.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

"Nixy! Nixy, child, we're waiting for you."

"On my way," I yelled down the stairs from my apartment.

I paused long enough to eye myself in the large oval mirror in the small entryway. Yep, I'd applied mascara to both sets of lashes. That should've been a given, but I'd been known to miss a set. Especially since I'd gone makeup-free for the past month. No point in primping when I'd spent my waking hours sanding, staining, and sealing nearly every surface of this old building. I'd even learned to wield a power sprayer to paint the twelve-foot-high walls and ceilings, and exposed ductwork. We'd installed three new fire-rated entry-exit doors, two roll-up service doors, and security cameras and alarms. We'd also made improvements to the kitchenette and bathroom in back of the store proper. Now the place shone, and we were ready for our grand opening.

By the way, I'm Leslee Stanton Nix, known to pretty much everyone as Nixy. The "we" who were waiting for me were my Aunt Sherry Mae Stanton Cutler and her five housemates, collectively known as the Silver Six. They lived together in Sherry's farmhouse and were closer than blood family. The Six were in their late sixties and early seventies, but they'd worked every bit as hard and long as I had to renovate the twenty-seven-hundred-square-foot building that housed my apartment, the storefront, and the workroom. They were every bit as invested in the success of our new folk art and crafts gallery as I was. Oops. Not a gallery. The Six thought "gallery" sounded too highfalutin, aka expensive, for Lilyvale. We'd settled on naming our enterprise The Handcraft Emporium.

"Nixy! Doralee will be here in twenty minutes!"


I clambered down the interior staircase leading to the building's back room. This space was as wide as a three-car garage, though not as deep, and it served as Fix-It Fred's workshop. However, we'd decided to use it as an arts and crafts classroom as needed. This evening it was needed for our Gorgeous Gourds class.

Fred scowled at me. "You know you sounded like a thundering herd trompin' down them stairs, don't you, missy?"

"Thundering herd?" I echoed, grinning.

"You laugh, but steep as those steps are, you're gonna fall and break a bone someday when nobody's here to help you."

"Point taken, Fred. I'll slow down."

"Nixy, child, how do we look?" asked Sherry.

I realized the Six stood in a line, as if for inspection as our former U.S. Navy nurse Maise Holcomb-who stood beside the others with her shoulders proudly thrown back and her eyes front-would say. We'd decided on a kind of uniform for the store, and so had ordered both short-sleeved forest green polo shirts and aprons in the same color, each with Handcraft Emporium embroidered in white above the left breast. Tonight Dab, Maise, Fred, and I wore the shirts while Sherry, Aster, and Eleanor wore the aprons. Most of us paired the emporium wear with blue jeans and tennis shoes. Dapper Dab-Dwight Aloysius Baxter, to be precise-and Fix-It Fred Fishner had donned their typical gear with their shirts. For Dab, polyester pants and loafers, and overalls for Fred.

Elegant Eleanor Wainwright was the exception to casual. A beautiful black woman with an ageless complexion, her style ran to timeless, tailored outfits, much dressier than the rest of us usually wore. Tonight she'd paired blue linen slacks, a matching blouse, and low-heeled pumps with the emporium apron, and still looked like she belonged in a fashion magazine. I imagined she'd wear only the apron. Never the polo shirt. And that was fine by me.

In fact, to borrow a Fred-phrase, I'd bet my last nuts and bolts the shirts and aprons would fall by the wayside sooner than later. Probably even mine, but the Silver Six were rocking them tonight.

I smiled at them in turn. "Y'all look fantastic, but are you comfortable?"

"I am," Dab said.

"I do believe the aprons and shirts turned out quite well," Eleanor declared.

Aunt Sherry ran her hand down the front of her apron. "These are wonderfully soft, too."

"I'm so glad we went with the hemp fabric," Aster Parsons added. Aster was Maise's sister, our throwback hippie, and all-things-herbal expert. She carried lavender oil mixed with water, and sprayed at will. "Hemp is sustainable, you know."

"We know, and this color will hide dirt and dust smudges," Maise said.

"Considering how thoroughly y'all have cleaned, I don't think we'll get too dirty," I soothed. "Does the shirt work for you, Fred?"

"I ain't used to working with a collar around my neck, but it's okay."

Fix-It Fred was a walking hardware store in bib overalls. Tonight's dark denim pair partly covered the embroidery on the polo shirt, but he did look spiffy. The many tools he stuck into each of his dozen pockets stood soldier straight.

Maise clapped her hands. "Time's ticking. Is everything shipshape for the class?"

I looked over the room setup. Two four-foot folding tables were in place for Doralee Gordon, the gourd class instructor. She'd face the wall separating the workroom from the store. Two similar tables held refreshments at the back of the room. Four eight-foot solid wood tables, which Fred used for workbenches, were positioned in a semicircle to give all the students a good view of Doralee. The arrangement accommodated sixteen students, four per table, a roll of paper towels at each place.

We'd scrounged a variety of barstools to use for classes, and duct-taped green plastic dollar store tablecloths to catch paint spills. Fred's table surfaces were pretty much beyond harm, but Eleanor had insisted that the tablecloths gave them a clean, unmarred, less well-worn look.

"It's perfect, Maise. We only have eleven paid students, including you, Sherry, and Fred, but this gives us room for walk-ins." If we had any. I hoped we would.

Sherry patted my arm. "Even eleven is a good turnout for our first guest instructor. It will take time to build a following. Besides, it's June. People are taking vacations."

"I hadn't thought of that."

"Chin up, child. It's all good."

I blinked at Sherry's use of slang, then blinked again as all the seniors but Fred headed through the door into the emporium proper.

"Where are y'all going?"

Sherry gave me a wave. "I told Doralee to park out back, but we'll be mingling in the store, where I can watch for her in case she forgets."

"And we're still training Jasmine," Maise tossed over her shoulder as she and Aster scooted out. "We'll send her back to help Doralee unload."

Eleanor followed. "I do believe that girl is a splendid addition to the business. She'll bring in the younger crowd."

"Maise assigned me to pass out name tags as the students arrive," Dab said as he strode out, his pants riding on his bony hips.

When the door closed behind the exodus, I chuckled, knowing that their true mission was to fuss over and rearrange their individual art displays.

I cocked a brow at Fred. "You're not going out front?"

"Nope, out back. Got all my tools and projects locked up," he said, gesturing at the wall of richly patinated pine cabinets, some open-shelved, some with doors and padlocks. "I told Ida Bollings to park in the lot out there, so I'll go keep a lookout for her."

"You're seeing Ida, Fred?"

He winked. "What can I say? I got a weakness for dames with hot wheels."

"Wheels as in her big blue Buick or that new walker she's sporting?"

"Both. Besides, she's bringing her famous pear bread."

With that he clanked-clunked his walker, loaded tool belt fastened to the front of it, out the new door that led to the alley and the parking lot just beyond it. I didn't know how much Fred needed the walker to steady his steps versus how much he simply wanted to keep all his tools near to hand. I did know he lifted the walker more than he scooted it. He'd developed the arm muscles of a weightlifter to show for it. And it tickled me that he had a thing for Pear Bread Lady Ida.

When the door closed behind Fred with a solid thunk, I noticed I'd left the nearby door that led up to my apartment open. I crossed to shut it, then turned to gaze around the room. I took a deep breath, basking in the quiet for a moment.

The last month had been exhausting, and the next week would be another whirlwind. Thank goodness Jasmine Young was doing a work-study program through the Business and Marketing Department at the technical college, and had chosen to do it with us. With skin the color of rich chocolate, she was enthusiastic about crafts and eager to learn the business, and all for minuscule pay, store discounts, and free classes if she wanted to take them. Since she had opted to take tonight's class from six thirty to eight thirty, Dab, Eleanor, and Aster would man the store.

Doralee Gordon should be here any old time now. I sure hoped she'd bring all the supplies she'd need. She'd seemed well organized when I confirmed the class details by phone, and what I'd seen of her art pieces lived up to her business's name: Hello, Gourdgeous. But if she'd forgotten anything key to teaching the class, we'd have a roomful of unhappy students.

Tomorrow we'd celebrate the first day of our grand opening and host a week of prize drawings, demonstrations, and discounts that we hoped would bring in buyers as well as lookers. Since three of the Silver Six, including Aunt Sherry, were folk artists themselves, they knew hundreds of other folk artists and craftspeople in our little part of southwest Arkansas and all over the state. A gratifying number of those artists had agreed to have their work sold in the emporium. In fact, we'd had such an overwhelming response, the store was well past full and verging toward cluttered territory.

Okay, so maybe only I found the space cluttered. I'd worked in a Houston fine art gallery where we carefully balanced featured pieces with negative, blank space, so being in the stuffed emporium made me feel claustrophobic early on. Now I was getting used to the shelves and display tables cheerily overflowing, Sherry's baskets hanging from the ceiling, quilts bursting with color hanging on racks, and several dress forms crowding the floor in a quirky formation. We even arranged some of the crafts on lipped benches out on the sidewalk. I'd worried about thefts, but Sherry had assured me the goods would be safe. And Aster spritzed me with her infamous lavender water to calm me. An outside security camera would've been more practical than lavender, but we'd had three installed inside. One provided a partial view of the sidewalk, which would have to do for now.

Still, with the crowded condition in the store, and artists counting on sales to boost their incomes, I sure hoped we sold a lot of merchandise during the grand opening. We needed to launch the store on Friday and Saturday with a super big bang because we'd be closed on Sunday. That's the day Sherry Mae had decided to rededicate the Stanton family cemetery. Aster had already smudged the graveyard to clear negativity by burning sage, cedar, lavender, and something else I couldn't recall now. Sherry, though, had wanted a formal blessing, and had sweet-talked her Episcopal priest into doing the honors. She'd also insisted on holding an outdoor reception following the short ceremony. Her farmhouse sat on half a city block, so she'd invited the whole town to attend.

I hoped for a much smaller turnout. I still shuddered, remembering why we were blessing the cemetery at all, and I didn't want to spend the afternoon rehashing those events of just eight weeks ago.

I glanced at the oversized wall clock hung near the stairway to my loft apartment. Dang, where was Doralee? I'd barely finished the thought when Jasmine flew through the store door wearing her emporium T-shirt and nearly bouncing with excitement.

"She's here, Miss Nixy. Just pulling around back."

ÒGood to meet you, Nixy, Jasmine,Ó Doralee said with a firm handshake when we met at her SUV. ÒThis is my gentleman friend, Zach Dalton.Ó

"Nice to meet you both," he said, meeting my gaze, then Jasmine's, his voice on the soft-spoken side, but pleasing.

"I hope you don't mind me bringing him to the class," Doralee continued. "He's going to act as my assistant, and then we're making a weekend of it in Lilyvale."

"Are you staying at the Inn on the Square?" I asked as her gentleman went to the back of the car to begin unloading. Jasmine joined him.

"Yes. We haven't checked in yet, but I understand we don't have to. Not in the usual way, I mean."

"You're right." I knew Clark and Lorna Tyler, the owners of the Lilies CafŽ and Inn on the Square, so I knew the drill. "Just enter the code Lorna e-mailed you at the alley door and go up the stairs. A small jog to the left, and you'll be in the hall. Your name will be on the door of your room and the key will be inside."

"Good to know, thanks. I'd better help unload."

I followed, and took the handle of one rolling bin while Jasmine took the second one. Zach carried the large box of gourds. The box was awkward, but not heavy, Doralee said.

"Even a box of large gourds is fairly lightweight."

Sherry had told me Doralee Gordon was fifty-five, but her chin-length golden brown hair and her cheerful smile made her look younger. Zach was probably in his early to mid-fifties, too. Trim and handsome, he dressed as country-casual as Doralee, and had kind hazel eyes almost the same color as hers. As he helped us arrange class materials on the tables, he worked quietly, but was quick to smile. He exuded a Zen-like calm that balanced Doralee's high-energy chatter.

When all the bottles of paint, the brushes, and handouts were set on the tables, Doralee greeted not only Sherry and the gang, but also the students as they came in. We'd made stick-on name tags printed in large block letters so the students wouldn't be anonymous faces. Doralee took advantage of our efforts and began to call people by name.

The class filed into the workroom, friends chatting with each other. I'd been a bit surprised when Maise, Sherry, and Fred had opted to take the class. I hadn't wanted them to pay at all, but when they protested the freebie, I insisted on giving them a discount rate. I was curious and a bit concerned about Sherry wanting to learn gourd art. She'd always crafted baskets. Perhaps she wanted to branch out or away from her basket weaving due to the macular degeneration, but I hadn't asked for her reasons. I did notice she'd let her hair fall over her left eye, and with her bangs blocking that eye, she could focus better using her right one.

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Paint the Town Dead 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A little slow at times but a great read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Solid plotting, very believable character voice, much better than average writing and unique setting make this a better than average mystery. As another reviewer mentioned, it is a bit slow, but still well worth the time invested.
KrisAnderson_TAR More than 1 year ago
Paint the Town Dead by Nancy Haddock is the second book in A Silver Six Crafting Mystery. Leslie “Nixy” Stanton along with the Silver Six are opening The Handcraft Emporium in Lilyvale, Arkansas. The will be having demonstrations throughout the week, and they will have their very first class. The class is being conducted by Doralee Gordon, gourd artist and instructor. Doralee is teaching the class when it is interrupted by a loud man with two ladies in tow. The man turns out to be Doralee’s ex-husband, Ernie Boudreaux. He brought along his new fiancé, Kim and his sister, Georgine. Ernie states that he taught Doralee everything, and he should be teaching the class. He is going to sit in to make sure she is not using his designs on her gourds (anyone else think he should be locked up). Nixy is glad when the class ends and Ernie and his entourage depart. Then Doralee discovers one of her tools (an awl) is missing. Nixy soon forgets it in the hubbub of the grand opening. The next day Nixy notices a little dog and cat sitting outside her shop in the alley. The two little cuties seem intent upon staying and soon Nixy has two new pets (The Silver Six love them). When Nixy accompanies Doralee to her lodgings, they find Kim Thomason, Ernie’s fiancé, dead in Doralee’s room (along with Doralee’s missing tool). The room has been ransacked. What was Kim looking for or did she interrupt someone else? Someone is intent on setting up Doralee. Nixy and the Silver Six spring into action. They need to find the real culprit and clear Doralee’s name. Can they find the killer? Paint the Town Dead was a charming cozy mystery. I like the characters, the adorable animals, and the setting of Lilyvale, Arkansas. The pace was good and the book held my interest throughout. I wish the mystery had been more complicated. I picked out the killer immediately. I did enjoy reading and following the clues to see if I was right. I give Paint the Town Dead 4 out of 5 stars. The one thing I did not like was the constant mention of lavender. Aster Parsons, a Silver Six member, has lavender in bowls around the shop and has a mist that she sprays quite frequently (to calm people). One or two mentions is acceptable, but at least once a chapter is too much (more like two or three times a chapter). I know I would never be able to enter this store with my allergies (I am highly allergic to lavender). Paint the Town Dead can be a stand-alone book, but I recommend reading the first book Basket Case. It will help you to understand the main characters and their history. I appreciated the descriptions of the various crafts (I love crafting projects). Nancy Haddock is a great descriptive writer. Thanks to her words I could envision the shop and the items in it as well the people. I look forward to reading the next book in A Silver Six Crafting Mystery. I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review. The comments and opinions expressed are strictly my own.
birdladyvm More than 1 year ago
PAINT THE TOWN DEAD, STORY LINE: Leslee Stanton Nix, aka Nixy, and the Silver Six are back in Nancy Haddock's latest mystery, Paint The Town Dead. Nixy and the gang have a new business enterprise. Therefore, hard work and fortitude are the order of the day. As a result, they have lined up craft demonstrations and prize giveaways for grand opening week; everything from gourd painting to wall art is on the calendar. Consequently a lot is happening at The Handcraft Emporium. Needless to say, things do not go as planned. Most noteworthy are: family squabbles, verbal assaults, theft, and murder. These were not on the agenda. However, gourd painter Doralee finds herself accused of murdering her ex-husbands obnoxious fiancée. The Silver Six and Nixy are on the case, along with hunky Detective Eric Shoar. Come along for shenanigans and crime solving in small town of Lilyvale, Arkansas. PAINT THE TOWN DEAD, CHARACTERS, PLOTTING, AND DEVELOPMENT: Firstly, author Nancy Haddock has crafted a solid mystery which will hold your attention and provide hours of entertainment. As result you will find yourself totally involved in the life of the Nixy and the Silver Six. Secondly, Ms. Haddock does not rush into murder; she gives the reader time to picture the town of Lilyvale, the citizens, and life in small town USA. The jungle drums in Lilyvale are in top form. Consequently, interaction of the town residents was realistic; noisy, gossipy, and of course, warm and loving. I love small town USA and Lilyvale is small town USA at its finest. Also, Ms. Haddock plotting of this story was very skillful. She does not give away the who, when, how, and why until the end of the book. Needless to say, Ms. Haddock crafted several characters worthy of the title murderer; each could have been the culprit. Furthermore, the inclusion of the two adorable pets, Amber the dog and T. C. the cat, was a stroke of genius. I love stories which feature pets; Ms. Haddock skillfully introduced and wove them into the story-line. Also, Ms. Haddock gifted the pets with wonderful personalities. As a result, they almost seem human. Ms. Haddock's portrayal of the Silver Six is realistic and charming. She does not depict seniors as people with one foot in the grave. This group of seniors has zest for life and energy to spare which is true of most seniors in our society. The pacing of the story was correct for the length of the book. Also, the story does not lag or bog down. In concluding the review of Paint The Town Dead, I found Ms. Haddock's writing style clear and fresh without the need for fluff to fill the page. PAINT THE TOWN DEAD, RECOMMENDATION; 4 STARS In conclusion, I do not hesitate to give Paint the Town 4 stars. I found Paint The Town Dead a relaxing clean mystery, which will appeal to anyone that enjoys a solid well-written story. I look forward to book 3 in this series. Finally: I received this book from the author, publisher, and Netgalley in return for an honest book review. Book reviews of any novel are dependent on the book review author’s opinion; consequently book reviews on line under my name and on my blog are my opinion,
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Easy read enjoyed
Debb23 More than 1 year ago
I loved this book, I can't say enough good about the characters. The silver six are all lovable with their own personalities without being overly quirky. Nixy is a strong likable woman who tries to help Doralee who's being looked at for the murder of her ex's fiance. Actually the silver six want to solve it and Nixy steps in to help keep them out of trouble. I like her interactions with Eric, the romance is moving at a nice pace. There is the addition of a couple of four legged characters. The mystery kept me guessing, I had the who but for the wrong reason. I will definitely continue on with this series.
Dollycas More than 1 year ago
Dollycas’s Thoughts The Handcraft Emporium is all ready to open and The Silver Six, Ms. Sherry, Dwight Aloysius Baxter, Maisie Holcomb and her sister Aster Parsons, Eleanor Wainwright and Fred Fishner. With Nixy’s help have several classes planned to draw in the customers. The first class is a gourd painting class and they invite Doralee Gordon to show off her talents. Things get a little heated when Doralee’s ex shows up with his sister and fiancée, to take the class and try to make Doralee very uncomfortable. When the fiancée is found dead the next day and Doralee becomes a suspect The Silver Six are all excited to solve another crime. This may not be good for Nixy’s new relationship with Detective Eric Shoar, but the man seems to have the patience of a saint. Nancy Haddock has written a wonderful mystery the immediately draws the reader in. I was surprised by the title change. The teaser chapter in the last book, Basket Case, said it was to be GOODBYE GOURDEOUS, while Paint the Town Dead works, I liked the first title better. The cover is GOURDEOUS and the mystery is delightful. Several twists and moments that had me giggle and a couple that has me laughing out loud. This story was a real treat. I enjoy every one of these characters, they continue to surprise and make us see age is just a number. They are continually on the go. I wish I had half their energy. They do get their noses out of joint when they think Nixy and Eric are investigating without them. But the things are quickly back in place. As for the new characters, Kim, the fiancée, is a greedy little witch trying to reel in husband #3. The perfect victim and the deeper the Six dug the more suspects they found. I almost felt sorry for Ernie, the ex, almost!. We also have T.C. and Amber, a dog and a cat, that were found in the alley behind the emporium. They quickly worm their way into everyone’s hearts, including mine. This story checks all the cozy boxes, unique small town, colorful characters, an intriguing mystery to solve, a bit of romance and a bunch of humor. As the temps get cooler, snuggle up in a blanket and get comfy with this cozy.
ReadYourWrites More than 1 year ago
Paint the Town Dead finds Leslee Stanton Nix, affectionately known as Nixy, along with her Aunt Sherry and Sherry’s housemates known collectively as the Silver Six opening their own folk art and craft gallery called The Handcraft Emporium. The group plans on hosting a week of various art/craft related classes, leading up to the grand opening. The first teacher is Doralee Gordon, who plans on teaching the fine art of gourd painting. Things are going good until Doralee’s ex-husband along with his fiancée and sister show up during the class and make a big scene. Not only does Ernie accuse Doralee of stealing his designs (never mind they haven’t seen nor spoken to each other in a long time) but they all are staying next door to each other at the same B&B. A few days later, Ernie’s fiancée Kim is found dead in Doralee’s room, with Doralee’s sculpting tool stuck in her. When Nixy’s beau, Detective Eric Shoar questions and links Doralee to the murder, the Silver Six step in to prove her innocence. Nixy has learned her lesson when it comes to investigating, but when a Silver Six member says, “Might as well give in, missy. If you don’t agree, we’ll just do it on our own.” she has no choice but to start looking into the case. Once the group starts investigating, they make some surprising discoveries about Kim Thomason. These discoveries create an interesting list of suspects. While Nixy is doing a little investigation work, her personal life takes an interesting turn. Of course, the Silver Six are there every step of the way. In Paint the Town Dead, readers get to see a fearless Nixy as she confronts a killer, hoping Detective Shoar and the cops catch up. Nancy Haddock has written a well-rounded mystery to keep readers on their toes and guessing until the big reveal. To say the romance girl inside of me is getting a little happy is an understatement. I can’t wait to see what is in store next for Nixy and the Silver Six. *Received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest and unbiased opinion.*
MasonCanyon More than 1 year ago
Author Nancy Haddock has crafted a group of fun-loving, madcap senior citizens that don’t know the meaning of retirement. Teamed with a young and feisty protagonist, Leslee Stanton ‘Nixy’ Nix, the group provides an entertaining adventure in PAINT THE TOWN DEAD. The story moves at a good pace and features enough surprises and detours to keep you guessing. The story flows smoothly as Nixy and the gang search for clues and a killer. The small town atmosphere adds depth to the story and comes alive through the author’s eye for details. The closeness, along with a bit of disagreeing, gives the characters a realistic feel. There’s a good mix of mystery, suspense, friendship, and support for a well-balanced story. PAINT THE TOWN DEAD can be read on its own. In addition, there are crafting tips and a tasty recipe to round out the adventure. Charming and entertaining, it will be hard to put this book down. FTC Full Disclosure – A copy of this book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review. The thoughts are completely my own and given honestly and freely.
Cynthia181 More than 1 year ago
I won this book from Goodreads giveaways. It is a wonderful story of a group of people in a small town who have put together a craft emporium and are having their grand opening when there is some tension with one of the artist and her ex and his new girlfriend. A murder, loving pets find a new home, a new relationship and lots of intrique. I loved this book it was nice to read a mystery and have a lot of twist and turns but you get to know the characters in the story. I plan on read more of the series and look forward to the next caper the Silver Six try to get themselves involved in
LisaKsBooksReviews More than 1 year ago
Book one may have been silver, but book two is gold! Once again author Nancy Haddock shares with us her brilliant writing, and gives us a second installment in her Silver Six Mysteries, that is even better than the first! I wouldn’t have that that possible, but I am so glad to be wrong! Author Haddock’s style of writing can’t help but pull a reader in. As informative as it is entertaining, her words flow across the pages in a way that keeps you wanting to turn the next page and the next. I sat down with the intention to start PAINT THE TOWN DEAD, but I didn’t stop reading until this wonderful book was finished. Everything I look for in a cozy mystery is between the pages of PAINT THE TOWN DEAD. The characters are simply fantastic. From protagonist Leslee Stanton Nix “Nixy”, to the entire group of the Silver Six. They are, sweet, fun, whacky, a handful, and I love every minute I spent with them when reading. The setting of Lilyvale, Arkansas is a lovely backdrop for this series. I could see each and every place the author described. Like the Handcraft Emporium, the group’s new craft shop, is the perfect addition to the series. I feel I know what every corner of what that store looks like. And of course, an excellent plot, with a superb mystery that will keep you on your toes, guessing and second guessing all the way to the exciting conclusion. I said in my review of book one, “BASKET CASE is one of the cutest, most refreshing new cozy mysteries of the year”. That was in 2015. So, I say now, PAINT THE TOWN DEAD is one of the best cozies of 2016, and the Silver Six Mysteries is one of the best cozy series I have read! Treat yourself to a copy of PAINT THE TOW DEAD. You deserve it! And if you haven’t read book one, BASKET CASE, pick them both up and read them back to back! And when you do have your own copy, be sure to check out the back of the book for a couple fun craft projects, and a yummy recipe!