Tee: Arizona, J. C. Penney's
Shoes: Qupid, DSW
Sunglasses: Brigantine tee shirt shop
Top: Merona, Target
Boots: Too Lips, DSW
Bag: Bisou Bisou, J. C. Penney's
Jacket: Candie's, Kohl's
Cami: Worthington, J. C. Penney's
Shoes: Guess, DSW
Sunglasses: Rampage, Boscov's
Contradictory to the title of this post, I'm not a big fan of flying. But I would like to see the West. I've never been unless you count a layover in Phoenix, which I do not, even if I do have the refrigerator magnet to prove it. One thing I do like to do on an airplane is read, though. It's as good a way as any to forget your troubles when you're helplessly airborne. And, of course, when you're helplessly back on terra firma, too.
Speaking of reading, I got more than I bargained for at the dollar store when I picked up Peggy Webb's Elvis and the Grateful Dead recently. Now, about 90% of the dollar store books I've read are weird, and I always find myself wondering if I think this just because they landed at the dollar store, or because they are, in fact, a little bit off. Weird or not, I could immediately tell that Webb's tale was one of the tribe of quirky cozy mysteries that I hold so dear. It turned out to be about two crime-solving cousins from Mississippi, Callie and Lovie, and Callie's basset hound Elvis, a canine convinced he's the King reincarnated. (Okay, so they're southern, not southwestern, which would be far more in keeping with the theme of this post. But Lovie does wear cowboy boots, most often with peasant skirts. And Callie, when pressed about her feelings for her not-quite-ex-husband, can be as prickly as our friend Mr. Cactus.) Fueled by sweet tea and ire, the twosome sets out to find the killer of not one but three -- what else? -- Elvis impersonators. Now, the mystery part isn't all that intriguing -- most cozies worth their sugar offer up a respectable-enough "wow!" or even "hey, I knew that," factor when all is said and done plot-wise. But this one makes little more than a lackluster attempt to tie things up lickety-split in the whodunit department. Nevertheless, considering that I'm no fan of hounds (Elvis included, even if it is blasphemy to say so below the Mason-Dixon line), it may come as a surprise that I rather enjoyed this outlandish adventure (or, on second thought, maybe it's not such a surprise, as I often end up enjoying books I profess to hate). After all, I don't read this stuff for the crimes -- I read it for the colorful characters. And they don't come much more rainbowed than a fast-and-loose foodie (that would be Lovie) and her baby-crazy cat lady of a cousin (Callie). Even if Callie is a bit of a shoe snob. She wears only designer and looks down on anyone who doesn't, so much so that a would-be black widow's culpability hinges, albeit presumably, upon her penchant for bargain basement kicks (kind of ironic, seeing as how I fished this book out of a bargain bin, but I digress). As ever, the sartorially suspect are guilty of -- or at least suspected of being guilty of -- more than mere crimes of fashion. But I was willing to overlook this character flaw in the name of fiction, remembering that snobs are people, too. Which is just one more way, I guess, that books help make us better people.
That having been said, happy trails to you . . . until we read again.