On the frontlines of the battle of the bulge, otherwise known as trying on bathing suits in the communal dressing room at Loehmann's, freelance writer Jaine Austen makes a new friend--a wannabe actress named Pam--and gets a new job: sprucing up Pam's bare-bones resume. Their feeling of connection is mutual, so Pam invites Jaine to join The PMS Club-a women's support group that meets once a week over guacamole and margaritas.
But joining the club proves to be more a curse than a blessing for Jaine. Though she is warned that Rochelle, the hostess, makes a guacamole to die for, Jaine never takes the warning literally. Until another PMS member, Marybeth, drops dead over a mouthful of the green stuff after confessing she is having an affair with Rochelle's husband.
While Rochelle and her husband are the obvious suspects, everyone at that night's meeting is under suspicion, including Jaine. So, instead of dishing dirt with The PMS Club, Jaine has to dig up dirt on the surviving members. And soon it becomes clear: someone in this club thinks getting away with murder should be a privilege of membership. . .
"Arrives at an unexpected and suitably scary ending." --Publishers Weekly
"Fluffy and humorous, this is an enjoyable, quick read." --Library Journal
In Levine's fifth romp to feature L.A. freelance writer Jaine Austen (after 2005's Shoes to Die For), Jaine makes the mistake of accepting a new friend's invitation to join her weekly margarita and bitch session group, the PMS Club. At the second meeting Jaine attends, one of the members dies, and since guacamole isn't supposed to contain peanuts, and they all know about Marybeth's allergies, it's murder. Marybeth was, it turns out, having an affair with the husband of the hostess, Rochelle, so there's an obvious suspect. But everyone's under suspicion, and Jaine watches a really good job (writing a monthly newsletter for a mega company with a dreamy contact person) get put on hold. The plot is obfuscated by several intrusions (the e-mail from her parents about catching America's-most-wanted hiding in their planned community, Jaine's weekly writing class for the local senior citizens, her attempts to put her cat, Prozac, on a diet, her own wardrobe malfunctions), but arrives at an unexpected and suitably scary ending. (June)
Copyright (c) Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
-- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
Showing 1-3 of the 3 most recent reviews
1 . Surprisingly funny!
Posted April 02, 2010 by ajseward , ElkfordQuite an entertaining read. I chose to read it based on someone elses review about it being laugh-out-loud funny at times and they were right. Good plot, not very predictable and quite funny! I enjoyed it. It as my first Laura Levine read but I will be buying more.
2 . Entertaining
Posted March 27, 2010 by clt , AnnandaleI enjoyed this book very much. It was clean, and it had good humor, and kept you wondering who done it. I couldn't wait to read it!!
3 . I've told all my friends about this book!!
Posted March 13, 2010 by kymmomof6 , eatonton,gaThis was a pleasure to read. It was laugh out loud funny. At times I laughed so much my family was asking me what's so funny? In the mixture with all the humor is a great mystery that keeps you guessing right up until the end. I have told everyone I know what a great read this is! I highly recommend it! It was the first thing I've ever read by her, and since then I have read read everything she's written! Although the other books are delightful too this is by far the most enjoyable!!
April 30, 2007
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Excerpt from The PMS Murder by Laura Levine
What's more painful than a mammogram? More excruciating than a bikini wax? More humiliating than spinach stuck to your front tooth?
Shopping for a bathing suit, of course.
There's nothing worse. Not even a root canal. (Unless it's a root canal in a bathing suit with spinach stuck to your front tooth.)
That's what I was doing the day I first became involved in what eventually became known as the PMS Murder: trying on a bathing suit. For some ridiculous reason I'd decided to take up water aerobics. Actually, for two ridiculous reasons: my thighs. Before my horrified eyes, they were rapidly turning into Ramada Inns for cellulite.
So I figured I'd join a gym, and after a few weeks of sloshing around in the pool, I'd have the toned and silky thighs of my dreams. But before I could get toned and silky, there was just one tiny obstacle in my way: I needed to buy the aforementioned bathing suit.
I knew it would be bad. The last time I'd gone bathing suit shopping, I came home and spent the night crying on the shoulders of my good buddy Jose Cuervo. But I never dreamed it would be this bad.
For starters, I made the mistake of going to a discount clothing store called the Bargain Barn. My checkbook was going through a particularly anemic phase at the time, and I'd heard about what great prices this place had.
What I hadn't heard, however, was that there were no private dressing rooms at the Bargain Barn. That's right. Everyone, I saw to my dismay, had to change in one ghastly mirror-lined communal dressing room, under the pitiless glare of fluorescent lights, where every cellulite bump looked like a crater in the Grand Canyon.
It's bad enough having to look at your body flaws in a private dressing room, but to have them exposed in a roomful of other women--I still shudder at the memory.
Making matters worse was the fact that I was surrounded by skinny young things easing their washboard tummies into size twos and fours. I once read that sixty percent of American women are a size twelve or larger. Those sixty percent obviously didn't shop at the Bargain Barn. But I shouldn't have been surprised. After all, this was L.A., the liposuction capital of the world, where it's practically against the law to wear a size twelve or larger.
I grabbed a handful of bathing suits, ignoring the bikinis and mini-thongs in favor of the more matronly models with built-in bras and enough industrial-strength spandex to rein in a herd of cattle.
I jammed my body into one hideous swimsuit after another, wondering what had ever possessed me to come up with this insane water aerobics idea. I tried on striped suits and florals; tankinis and skirtinis; blousons and sarongs. No matter what the style, the end result was always the same: I looked like crap.
One suit promised it would take inches of ugly flab from my waist. And indeed it did. Trouble was, it shoved that ugly flab right down to my hips, which had all the flab they needed, thank you very much.
I'd just tried on the last of the bathing suits, a striped tankini that made me look like a pregnant convict, when suddenly I heard someone moaning in dismay.
I looked over and saw a plump thirty something woman struggling into a pair of spandex bike shorts and matching halter top. At last. Someone with actual hips and thighs and tummy. One of the sixty percenters!
She surveyed herself in the mirror and sighed, her cheeks flushed from the exertion of tugging on all that spandex.
"My God," she sighed. "I look like the Pillsbury Doughboy with cleavage."
"Tell me about it," I said. "I look like the doughboy with cleavage, retaining water."
"Oh, yeah?" she countered. "I look like the doughboy with cleavage, retaining water on a bad hair day."
She ran her fingers through her blunt-cut hair and grimaced.
"Would you believe this is a size large?" she said, tugging at the shorts. "Who is this large on? Barbie?"