Friday, August 20, 2021

Book Review: With Vics You Get Eggroll by Diane Vallere (Madison Night #3)

Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Strong mystery filled with compelling characters
Cons: With cons you don’t get eggroll
The Bottom Line:
Abducted women
Madison’s friend in crosshairs
Grabbed me on page one

Will Madison Be the Next Abduction Vic?

It’s been too long since I last visited Madison Night, the Doris Day obsessed Midcentury Modern decorator star of one of Diane Vallere’s mystery series.  My main reason for waiting to read With Vics You Get Eggroll was waiting to see the Doris Day movie that inspired the title.  Since I did that last month, it was time to dive in and see what Madison was up to in this book.

Several single women have disappeared around the Dallas suburb where Madison Night lives in recent weeks, so all the women in the area are on high alert.  That alert only goes up when the body of one of those women is found.  There is evidence next to her body pointing the finger squarely at her abductor – Lt. Tex Allen.

Lt. Allen happens to be a friend of Madison’s, and she knows he couldn’t have done it.  With Tex suspended from his job at the police department while the investigation is ongoing, Madison finds herself involved in his attempts to clear his name.  That’s only made more complicated by the return of Hudson James, the handyman that Madison might have feelings for.  Will Madison figure out who the kidnapper is in time?  Or will she be the next victim herself?

I’m not exaggerating when I say that this book captured me on page one and didn’t let me go until I finished it.  No, I didn’t read it in one sitting, but I think I could have.  (Stupid day job keeps getting in the way of what is actually important.)  There were more than enough twists to keep me engaged, and they were paced perfectly to keep me wondering what was going on but still giving me enough time to absorb what I was learning.  And yes, everything made sense when we reached the climax.

I’ll admit, I wish it hadn’t been so long between books.  There are references to the events of the first two stories, and I am hazy on what exactly happened.  But that’s on me.  If you want to fully appreciate those references and what they have revealed about the characters, you’ll want to read the series in order and not wait so long between books.

Even with all the intrigue in the plot, we get plenty of time for character development.  The new characters are all interesting and memorable, but it is the three leads who really shine.  We’ve met Madison, Tex, and Hudson before, and they all get plenty of time in the spotlight here.  Honestly, some of those scenes and Madison’s thoughts about her own life are just as intriguing as the mystery itself.  But don’t worry, they are balanced perfectly with the next plot twist.

I mentioned earlier wanting to watch With Six You Get Eggroll before I read this book.  That is completely optional.  This book stands perfectly well on its own; we are talking a mystery versus a romantic comedy, after all.  However, if you are familiar with the movie, you’ll catch a couple of Easter eggs that are a fun wink and nod to the Doris Day movie.  It’s an added bonus, but not something that will hamper your enjoyment of this book if you haven’t seen it.

Prepare plenty of reading time when you sit down to read With Vics You Get Eggroll.  This is a well plotted mystery filled with great characters that will keep you hooked until you get to the final page.

Need more Madison?  Here are the rest of the Madison Night mysteries.

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