Book Review: The Look of Love by Mary Jane Clark
January 19, 2012 4 Comments
I got this book: for review from the publishers, William Morrow (a Harper imprint)
First Published: 2012 (January 17th)
I read this in: English, the original language
Number of pages: 352
The Look of Love: What it is About
Piper Donovan is asked to provide a cake for the wedding of a spa owner in California. She’s invited to spend a week at the very luxurious spa while preparing the cake.
Soon after she arrives there is a murder and it appears that Jillian, the bride, is in danger. There are several people who have a reason to harm her or via her, her father, who dotes on her.
Piper gets to know some of the guests and helps one of them to try and uncover possible foul play (maybe unrelated to the murder). Meanwhile she also auditions for a commercial and has a friend back home who would like to get more involved with her, if she lets him.
The Look of Love: What I thought
4 stars (out of 5) This was a fun, easy read. First I expected this to be a cozy mystery, but it wasn’t really. Piper doesn’t try and solve the murder or is involved with finding out who is after the bride. She’s just present when things happen and curious about the situation.
This was my first book by this author, but apparently there are more books with Piper Donovan as protagonist. I didn’t warm to her much and wondered whether this was because I stepped in half-way a series and would have known and loved Piper had I read the other books. In any case, the author didn’t introduce Piper in much detail and so I missed a connection with her. On the other hand, it was not at all necessary to read other books in the series to understand this book. It was definitely an independent story.
I enjoyed the setting: a luxurious spa in a warm climate. A nice place to spend some time, even if it was only in a book. The mystery was fun, as was the secondary story in which Piper helped another guest finding out what dirty goings on were happening in one of the treatment rooms.
It was fun to note that there were several doting fathers that were worried for the welfare of their daughters, whereas the daughters just did what they felt like. On the other hand, I found the idea of the fathers rather patronising and it seemed that in the world of Piper, women needed some protection (or this was assumed by their fathers).
The groom played a minor role in the story and he could have been a bit more worried about his bride-to-be, when she appeared to be the target of some vicious attacks.
The story had some rather unlikely parts (such as hiring someone to do a wedding cake only a few weeks before the wedding, without ever having tasted one of her cakes) but all in all it was a fun story. Ideal for when you’re on holiday in a lounge chair at the pool in the sun, but actually, also quite a good read when on the sofa with the heating on while it’s gray and miserable outside. Short chapters, easy writing.