Another Day Another Dali by Sandra Orchard (review)

dali-comps.inddPublisher’s Description:

The world of art theft can be a deadly game–one that Serena Jones understands all too well.

When FBI Special Agent Serena Jones takes on the case of a forged Dali painting as a favor to her grandmother, she assumes it will be a typical investigation. Hopefully collaring the thief will also mean finally measuring up in her grandmother’s eyes. But the deeper she delves into the forgery and the suspects surrounding it, the less typical it becomes.

The Dali isn’t the only painting that’s fallen prey to the forgery-replacing thief, raising the possibility of a sophisticated theft ring–one with links to dirty cops, an aspiring young artist, and the unsolved murder of Serena’s grandfather. To make matters worse, someone connected to the forgeries seems to be determined to stop Serena’s investigation–no matter the cost.

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This follow up to the first Serena Jones Mystery, A Fool and His Monet, continues with the same light and breezy writing style that somehow seamlessly moves into action scenes with impact.  Told in first person, the new mystery is a bit convoluted at first but as multiple situations occur it is as interesting and intriguing as expected.  The art related descriptions of dangerous situations are unique in my reading experience, and have led me to look up more than one artist.

Bullets ripped through the car beside us and whizzed over our heads, as if we’d landed in the middle of a Barnaby Furnas painting.  Screams filled the air. (p.114)

Family is an underlying theme and Serena’s family again plays an important role, this time with her Nana Stella bringing her in discretely investigate a friend’s forged painting.  Family dinners remain fraught with complications while Serena’s contentious relationship with her Nana provides an interesting and sympathetic secondary storyline.  Both men in her life continue to show promise as potential romantic interests, much to the delight of Serena’s mother, while one of them becomes a bit more intriguing as something unknown is hinted at.  But best of all, Great Aunt Martha is back and ready for adventure, now with her mobbed up boyfriend just a phone call away.

I stopped dead in the middle of the street and blinked.  Whoa, where did my Aunt Martha learn moves like that?  She was like a female version of a Jackie Chan spy movie star. (p.147)

Serena Jones Mysteries are fast-paced stories with a good dose of danger, a hint of romance, and just the right amount of humor.  This second outing was just as fun as the first, and I’m looking forward to this series continuing with Over Maya Dead Body later this year.  It very much lends itself to the thought that someone should option it for television or a movie, with the caveat that they leave in Serena’s faith.

Recommended if you enjoy light mystery, clean romance, and a fun narrator.  I find myself racing through the books in this series, not wanting to put them down until I see all the different story threads being brought together and how they may or may not relate to the unsolved murder of Serena’s grandfather, and continuing to wonder – will it be her building superintendent or a certain senior FBI agent…    

Another Day Another Dali (Serena Jones Mysteries #2) | Revell, Oct. 2016 | paperback, 352 pages

This review refers to a finished copy received for review from the publisher through the Revell Reads blogger program.  No funds were exchanged and a positive review was not required.  All opinions expressed are my own.


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