"Stilettos, Bow Ties & Dead Guys" By Jennifer Fischetto: Review/Giveaway

Review by Kathleen Costa

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win an ebook copy of the book and a link to purchase it.

I See Dead...Guys

Very few people beyond family are aware that Gianna Mancini has been communicating with “dead guys” since “when I was a kid, I fell, hit my head, and died for a minute.” They show up unannounced, of course, pretty much make a nuisance of themselves, assist when they can often sans a clear memory, and help to apprehend the killer, and then “poof!” life goes back to normal...until the next apparition. She also has quite the close knit, yet meddlesome, family to contend with, especially since she now lives in the small apartment above the family deli. She is also in the “on” mode of an “on again, off again” relationship with Julian Reed who is about to open his own private investigations firm located across the street. Of course, until he has enough clients, he’ll need to continue as a “fixer” with the law firm of Carter, Hamilton & Levine. There is also a possible romantic triangle, Julian believes, involving childhood friend Michael Sheridan who has recently re-entered Gianna’s life, key in getting her a new job, and although he knows her secret, they don’t talk about it. Seeing and talking with dead people isn’t the best topic of discussion.

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Image Source Gemma Halliday Publishing
Stilettos, Bow Ties & Dead Guys earns 5/5 Peekaboo Pumps...Sooo Entertaining!

Gianna has been working for Vargas Events as an assistant party planner although she laments not getting the same mentoring other assistants receive. But, it beats working at her family’s deli. The wedding for Deidre and Robert Prescott’s daughter Taylor is just around the corner, and she and her boss, Valentina, are dealing with the bride’s eclectic ideas for the ceremony which are often in conflict with the “mother-zilla” who seems an expert on all the proper etiquette. However, it is still a way for Gianna to show her boss how well she can manage any issue. It is a bit out-of-the-norm, the mother says, to have a wedding shower so close to the wedding, and just as “odd” to invite the assistant wedding planner to attend, but Gianna accepts hoping her boss will approve of her “going the extra mile” for a client. The party, of course, continues the “everything odd” theme. Gianna witnesses an interaction between the bride and the best man, interrupts the bride’s father with his sister-in-law, is surprised by a friend of the family honing in on Gianna’s special nature, and then running into the maid of honor. Well, not running into exactly, more like running through. No body, no screams of discovery, yet Gianna knows the maid of honor is dead somewhere on the estate. Her ghost is standing right in front of her. But, odd doesn’t stop there. The bride asks Gianna to fill the void in the wedding party which puts her right in the middle.

Brilliant! Jennifer Fischetto has penned a delightful fourth story in her Gianna Mancini Mystery with wedding preparations, family drama, and the ghost of the maid of honor demanding revenge. The well-written drama is very entertaining, well-paced, and includes a witty style of humor I enjoy. One wedding Gianna hoped would set her apart from the other assistants has so many compelling elements: secrets, lies, and a manuscript of a tell-all many want to get their hands on. But, it’s the conflict between Gianna and Julian that offers an interesting dynamic. She finds the body and is set to notify authorities, but Julian shows up in his role as a “fixer” of embarrassing dilemmas for the rich and famous, yet working together seems the best decision. The idea of a ghost as a client is portrayed well, not juvenile, and although the victim disappears at a moments notice, has limited memory, and struggles with the concept they are no longer alive, it is done well as a way to explore clues, explain motive and possible suspects, and add a bit of humor; try explaining talking to “thin air.”

The drama is clever with layers of secrets unfolding, but it’s the characters in which I became immediately invested: varied personalities, close relationships. I greatly enjoy that Gianna’s personality is realistic with reasonable weaknesses and challenges, and her methods of investigating take into account the official rules, most of the time. She also has no desire to negatively impact her brother’s position on the force or send Detective Burton on a rampage. Her family is great, some quirky manners, but a genuine positive dynamic is portrayed. Fischetto’s writing style is somewhat unique, odd in a way. She writes using a present tense form. It’s different, and although it took some getting used to, it doesn’t effect one’s enjoyment.

Alert! The fifth book in the series, Diamonds, Pies & Dead Guys, is set to release on June 22. It is currently on preorder HERE on Amazon. Gianna is excited about her new job as a receptionist at her beau’s budding PI firm and the newest member of the Mancini family soon to be born, but after running into a high school frenenmy and then greeting the frenenmy in a less than corporal form, Gianna uses her unique ability to uncover a host of secrets along with a killer.

Bonus! Kings River Life’s Mysteryrat’s Maze Podcast highlights the first book in Jennifer Fischetto’s Gianna Mancini Mystery series, Lipstick, Lies & Dead Guys. Head over to the podcast and listen to chapter one read by local actor Teya Juarez. 

Be a Big Jennifer Fischetto Fan!

USA Today Bestselling Author Jennifer Fischetto pens the delightful three-book Gianna Mancini Mysteries. Gianna Mancini communicates with ghosts. She also co-writes the six-book Jamie Bond Mysteries series with Gemma Halliday. Jamie Bond is a model turned private investigator. She also penned Death by Scones in the GHP Danger Cove multi-author series starring Riley Spencer, new owner of Cinnamon Sugar Bakery. All are entertaining, clever, and a cozy for everyone’s taste. 

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To enter to win an ebook copy of Stilettos, Bow Ties & Dead Guys, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "bow ties,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen April 24, 2021. US residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section in Kings River Life and in our mystery category here on KRL News & Reviews. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. And check out our new mystery podcast which features mystery short stories and first chapters read by local actors! A new episode went up this week.

You can use this link to purchase the book. If you have adblocker on you may not be able to see the Amazon link:

Kathleen Costa is a long-time resident of the Central Valley, and although born in Idaho, she considers herself a “California Girl.” Graduating from CSU-Sacramento, she is a 35+ year veteran teacher having taught in grades 1-8 in schools from Sacramento to Los Angeles to Stockton to Lodi. Currently Kathleen is enjoying her retirement revitalizing hobbies along with exploring writing, reading for pleasure, and spending 24/7 with her husband.


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