Hollywood Homicide by Kellye Garrett Hollywood Homicide by Kellye Garrett
Narrator: Bahni Turpin
Series: Detective by Day #1
Published by Dreamscape Media on March 10, 2020
Source: Purchased
Genres: Cozy Mystery
Length: 10 hrs 4 mins
Pages: 306
Format: Audiobook
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four-stars

Dayna Anderson doesn’t set out to solve a murder. All the semi-famous, mega-broke black actress wants is to help her parents keep their house. After witnessing a deadly hit-and-run, she figures pursuing the fifteen-grand reward isn’t the craziest thing a Hollywood actress has done for some cash.

But what starts as simply trying to remember a speeding car soon blossoms into a full-on investigation. As Dayna digs deeper into the victim’s life, she wants more than just reward money. She’s determined to find the poor woman’s killer too. When she connects the accident to a notorious Hollywood crime spree, Dayna chases down leads at paparazzi hot spots, celeb homes and movie premieres. She loves every second—until someone tries to kill her.

And there are no second takes in real life.

Dayna, an out of work actress, is in desperate need of money- not just so she can eat, but because her parents need her help. When she witnesses a hit and run, and discovers there is a sizeable reward for information leading to an arrest- Dayna turns amateur detective in hopes of claiming the reward money. She soon discovers the case could be connected to a recent spate of crimes in Hollywood- which sends her on a madcap mission to find a murderer. It’s a grand adventure until Dayna becomes a target. I actually really liked that Dayna was just out for the reward money, it gives her a good reason for investigating.

This was a good mystery and funny. There were many laugh-out-loud moments. The celebrity-obsessed culture of Hollywood is used to great effect and Dayna’s observations about it are humorous and effective. It’s also a nice touch that Dayna isn’t just pointing and mocking. She is part of that world so while she may poke gentle fun at her best friend’s relentless seeking of fame, it’s done with affection.

Dayna is a true amateur; she doesn’t know what she’s doing, but she is enthusiastic and full of determination. She’s also gleaned some tips from watching true crime shows. I love how she can convince herself that she knows who the killer is, tells the tipline, finds out she was wrong, and just keeps going.

This is a fun, light cozy mystery. I listened to the audio, which worked well. The story’s told in the first person and the narrator makes Dayna come alive.

About Kellye Garrett

Kellye Garrett’s first novel, Hollywood Homicide, about a semi-famous, mega-broke black actress won the Agatha, Anthony, Lefty and Independent Publisher “IPPY” awards for best first novel. It’s also one of BookBub’s Top 100 Crime Novels of All Time. The second, Hollywood Ending, was featured on the TODAY show’s Best Summer Reads of 2019 and was nominated for both Anthony and Lefty awards. Prior to writing books, Kellye spent eight years working in Hollywood, including a stint writing for Cold Case. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for Sisters in Crime and co-founded Crime Writers of Color. Her next project is an #ownvoices domestic suspense novel about a woman looking into the overdose death of a one-time reality star found within blocks of her house—her own estranged younger sister. You can learn more at KellyeGarrett.com.

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