Saturday, June 7, 2008

The Velvet Chair-Jennifer Stevenson

The Velvet Chair
Jennifer Stevenson
Ballantine, Jun 2008, $6.99
ISBN: 9780345486691

After spending the day insuring gas stations were not gouging customers, Chicago Department of Consumer Service detective Jewel Heiss and her partner former con artist Clay Dawes are going undercover. Joining them is the Randy the sex demon she freed from THE BRASS BED. They are to investigate the claims of the owner of the suddenly very popular the Venus Machine.

The owner claims the velvet chair can make anyone attractive. Jewel assumes they are dealing with a professional con artist. Her flim flam theory is affirmed when the trio soon learns that the Venus Machine is connected to Clay's dad, who mentored his offspring re the art of the con and tied also to another investigation involving a spa. To prove fraud, Jewel sits on the velvet chair, but to her shock something strange and fascinating begins to happen to her.

This is an engaging lighthearted urban fantasy starring an intriguing heroine and her retinue. The story line is fast-paced, but newcomers should read the first Jewel of a tale to better understand how the lead female ended up with two male hunks as “partners”. Very creative, sub-genre fans will enjoy the antics of THE VELVET CHAIR.

Harriet Klausner

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