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If Looks Could Kill by Kate White
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If Looks Could Kill (edition 2005)

by Kate White

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387None27,705 (3.05)4
Member:EmScape
Title:If Looks Could Kill
Authors:Kate White
Info:Grand Central Publishing (2005), Mass Market Paperback, 416 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***1/2
Tags:fiction, mystery/thriller, small paperback, read, read in 2012

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If Looks Could Kill by Kate White

Recently added byComicGirl178, SirDi, Spalding, private library, kanej, nuclearmse
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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
A fun, breezy mystery narrated in first person by Bailey Weggins, crime and human interest freelancer for Gloss magazine in New York City. Bailey's friend and Gloss editor, Cat Jones discovers her nanny dead in her home and asks Bailey to investigate as she likes to hedge her bets and thinks Bailey might find some things the police overlook. Bailey's investigation takes her in several different directions, which gets kinda tedious after a point, particularly as most of them don't pan out, but her hip, slang-y voice keeps it from becoming too tiresome. Still, it took me several days longer to read these 416 pages than the 512 page Erica Spindler novel I read directly previous. There wasn't much suspense, just a lot of wandering around Manhattan and the surrounding countryside interviewing suspects. Although I had an inkling who the killer might be, I was still kept guessing and almost misdirected.
My biggest complaint is that unfortunately, there is a rather large spoiler in the cover art. Otherwise, it was a decent enough read. I'm not going to run out and purchase the rest of this series, but I will keep an eye out for them at garage sales and used book stores. ( )
  EmScape | Dec 22, 2012 |
The story starts off with free-lance journalist Bailey Weggins being called by her boss to investigate her nanny not answering a call, when they find a dead body. Even though she's a writer and not a cop, Bailey is given the task of investigating this murder. Bailey's character to me was much more style than substance. She's too cool, too sassy, and not much like a real person. Her relationships in this story fell flat and did not remotely interest me. It seemed as if they were there just so she could have love interests, but like her character had little substance to it.

The murder investigation had some good twists and turns to it, but in the end became a little predictable. At times it felt the misdirection was forced, but at least the logical progression of the story made sense. The story moved at a good pace. There was enough going on to keep it interesting, but there wasn't enough to really sink your teeth into.
Carl Alves - author of Two For Eternity ( )
1 vote Carl_Alves | Oct 3, 2012 |
Bailey Weggins, true-crime writer and former police reporter, jumps headlong into a murder investigation when Catherine “Cat” Jones’s nanny dies after eating poisoned Godiva chocolates, which were apparently meant for Cat. Cat is editor-in-chief of Gloss, a women’s magazine for which Bailey is a contributing writer. In her investigation, Bailey assembles a long list of possible suspects – Cat has clawed her way to the top in the magazine business, and has left lots of people who have reason to dislike her. The question is, would any of those reasons lead to murder? And is the attempt on Cat’s life related to an earlier death by poisoned mushrooms of another women’s magazine editor?

The book’s two main characters are ambitious, 30-something women, veterans of the New York magazine scene. [The author herself knows that scene – Kate White is editor of Cosmopolitan and a published non-fiction author. If Looks Could Kill is her first mystery.] The insider’s view of the world of high-powered women’s magazines just adds to an already good story.

Bailey Weggins is a terrific heroine. She’s successful, happily divorced, living the good life in a small Greenwich Village apartment, answering “booty calls” from a handsome investment banker. Cat lives in a 1880s Manhattan town home, is married to a hunk and confesses she’s a shoe slut who likes showing “toe cleavage.” [I’d never heard of toe cleavage before, or “buttne” – acne on one’s posterior. The things we learn reading mysteries!]

The author is a master at physical description, especially of characters. When she describes one character as having nostrils like kidney beans, I can picture her immediately. Readers always know what clothing and hairdos characters are wearing, even make-up and nail polish colors. The detailed descriptions extend to home décor, as readers are treated to Bailey’s running commentary on the homes she visits in the course of her investigation. New York locales came alive, too. Although the writing is clever and breezy, the plot moves quite slowly until the last ten pages, when the pace quickens. I still liked the book.

Some readers who don’t like sex or romance in their mysteries may put off with the opening scene of Bailey in bed with her current love interest. Not to worry – sex scenes in If Looks Could Kill are brief, not explicit and definitely not a focus of the story.

By Diana. First Published in Mystery News, June-July 2002

Review based on publisher- or author-provided review copy. ( )
1 vote NewsieQ | Jan 20, 2011 |
This is the authors first fiction novel and the first in a projected Bailey Weggins series. I gotta admit that this is a book I would likely have never picked up on my own. I mostly read sci fi and fantasy and can occassionally be talked into reading an Oprah book of the month or some such novel. I read this book because it was part of the book club I am in. I liked it. It was an easy read, semi-funny, very entertaining and reasonably surprising as to the who-done-it. You could tell it was the authors first novel and that she is editor-in-chief for Cosmo magazine. She talks too much about desinger clothes, shoes-toe cleavage?-, food and restaurants for my taste and her characters are all extremely shallow-as I highly suspect the author is as well-but it was a good first try. ( )
  laileana | Feb 2, 2010 |
I don’t know how I keep getting sucked into these glamour magazine type novels, but here is another one. The writing was pretty good but the plot was a bit transparent. There was plenty of false suspects (including a strangely hostile husband), but in the end, it turned out to be a scorned wife. Not Cat, but someone else at the magazine, Leslie. Her husband was having an affair with the nanny and it became serious. Leslie didn’t think so and killed her, later staging the “attempted” killing of another magazine editor. ( )
  Bookmarque | Jun 13, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 044661257X, Mass Market Paperback)

Meet Bailey Weggins, the thirty-something, single-again true crime writer for a leading Manhattan woman's magazine. Smart and savvy, she's got a sixth sense when it comes to seeing the truth in a story-especially if it's murder. Bailey's in bed with her commitment-challenged lover K.C. when she gets a frantic call from her high-maintenance boss at Gloss magazine. Grabbing coffee and a cab outside her Greenwich Village apartment-the consolation prize in her divorce settlement-Bailey reluctantly heads uptown. At Cat Jones's Upper East Side town house, she finds something that seriously clashes with the chic décor: the dead body of the family's line-in nanny.

As Bailey-unofficially-delves into the murdered girl's past, she finds no shortage of A-list suspects. But when a startling discovery suggests that Cat may have been the intended victim, Bailey is suddenly up to her bed head in high-profile investigation that's perfect fodder for a tabloid headline: Is someone trying to kill the editor's of women's magazines?

With the spotlight on New York's glitzy media world, Bailey interviews back-stabbing editors, straying husbands, and one sexy, six-feet two psychologist who could make her decide to kick K.C. to the curb. Sporting her pair of red slingbacks and armed with the investigative skills she's honed as a true crime reporter, she sets out on a search that takes her from Manhattan's exclusive Carnegie-Hill area-the nanny heartland of America-to the ritzy weekend estates of Pennsylvania and Connecticut. Bailey will need all her street smarts and some lightning-fast detective work to catch a killer who could end up deleting her name from the masthead for good.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:31:02 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

New York true crime writer Bailey Weggins is dragged into a murder investigation by her boss, magazine editor Cat Jones, whose nanny is murdered by poisoned chocolate truffles meant for Cat.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 4 descriptions

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