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Staged to Death by Karen Rose Smith

Staged to Death” is the first in what looks to be an entertaining “Caprice DeLuca Mystery” series by Karen Rose Smith.  This book was published in December 2013.

Caprice DeLuca is a home stager in a town that is supposed to be near York, PA called Kismet.  Kismet apparently has a wealth of upscale homes that need staging in order to sell at a higher price. The person who gets called in on these types of jobs in Kismet and nearby York is Caprice DeLuca, a 30-something home stager.  Caprice themes her stagings to match the decor appropriate to the home and the interests of likely buyers.  What she gets when she holds  an open house in the newly staged mansion of Roz and Ted Winslow is one owner who is found slain in his antique sword room and the other owner, Caprice’s friend, Roz, who is accused of the crime.  Caprice takes on the task, to the chagrin of the investigating police detective, of proving that Roz did not murder her husband.

This book is part mystery and part romance.  Karen Rose Smith is an experienced romance writer, and the plot includes a considerable amount of back-and-forth between Caprice and two potential love interests, an attractive but aloof attorney who is Caprice’s brother’s partner, Grant, and an even more handsome emergency care doctor, Seth, who immediately fires up the mutual sexual attraction in Caprice.  There are also a lot of cute cats and dogs in the book to pique the interest of animal lovers as Caprice is a well-known animal rescuer in the town.

Staged to Death” will find a strong fan base among cosy mystery lovers, and especially among those who are also fans of Leslie Meier.

Reviewed with a provided copy.

Liz Nichols

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