Reviews for Sassy Belles

Booklist Reviews 2013 May #1
Blake O'Hara Heart has always taken pride in the fact that her lipstick doesn't smudge, and her hair doesn't frizz in the Tuscaloosa heat. When she finds out that her brother-in-law, Lewis Heart, has disappeared after a salacious midday romp with a close friend, the sweltering southern heat suddenly seems unbearable. Tasked with maintaining her friend Vivi's innocence, uncovering as many details as possible about Lewis' disappearance, coddling her husband's shifting career ambitions, and trying to untangle new feelings about an old flame, Blake feels her poised and perfect southern facade slowly cracking. Albright gives readers a delightfully fun and flirty story, focusing on a group of strong, sexy southern women and the men they care about. Although Lewis' disappearance doesn't end in the discovery of a grisly corpse, Albright raises the tension by providing a series of glimpses into Lewis' past and Blake's future. By turns tender, witty, steamy, and sharp, Albright's first novel proves she's a gifted storyteller with intimate knowledge of southern culture. This charming tale is tailor-made for fans of Mary Kay Andrews and Anne George. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2013 May #2
The mysterious disappearance of her local celebrity boyfriend sends Vivi McFadden to her best friend and attorney, Blake O'Hara Heart, and together, the two women explore history, friendship and matters of the heart to get to many different truths. When Vivi is certain she's killed her boyfriend, Lewis Heart, by, ahem, loving him to death, she calls the one person in the world she trusts to take care of her: Blake, her best friend since childhood and a crack attorney. But when the police get to the scene, the body has disappeared. Tracking down clues at first throws Vivi under suspicion, but the case gets more mysterious and complicated as the days pass, especially since Lewis is Blake's brother-in-law, and Harry, Blake's husband, has political aspirations. Also, the lead investigator on the case is Blake's high school sweetheart, Sonny, which confuses Blake, since she and Harry suddenly seem to be moving toward different goals in life. The salacious nature of the whole story is embarrassing to Harry, and for a man who hopes to be a Senator, a sprawling, colorful cast of secondary characters with distinct Southern flairs can be troublesome. As Vivi, Blake, Sonny and Harry follow Lewis' trail, secrets, attractions and attachments will play out in surprising ways, with distinct nods to the strength of family, the friendship sisterhood and the indomitable Southern spirit. Albright's first novel is a frothy, frolicking story with enough over-the-top characters and quirky plot points that many readers won't notice, or will be entertained enough to forgive, the roller-coaster pacing, the occasionally awkward storytelling, and the characters who do things that don't always make sense for them or show them in admirable ways. An imperfect debut that may still capture the audience's attention and affection given its appealing themes and high-spirited style. Copyright Kirkus 2013 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2013 April #1

There's nothing former Days of Our Lives actress Albright's Southern gals--and their moms, grandmothers and frenemies--won't do to right wrongs, shed bad habits, and bag Mr. Right in this rambunctious chick-lit debut. Razor-sharp perfectionist Blake; her red-haired, hot-blooded BFF Vivi; often-married mom Kitty; spitfire grandmother Meridee; former step-sister and nemesis Dallas; and first-love and Tuscaloosa, Ala., cop Sonny unravel the possible murder of Blake's brother-in-law Lewis, playboy and announcer for the University of Alabama Crimson Tide. His headline-grabbing disappearance puts Vivi in the hot seat since she was the last to see him--in room 106 of the Fountain Mist motel--and frays the thinning strands holding together the marriage of Blake and her ambitious lawyer-hubby Harry. More importantly, the mystery defines the complex bonds between Blake and Vivi, and reveals how each is "saved by a belle." Albright good-naturedly displays her inner redneck while steering this giddy Dixie romp with ease--leaving lots of room at the happy ending for another adventure starring these steel magnolias, who "take care of each other... stand our ground... and do it with high heels, big hair and lots of lipstick." Agent: Elizabeth Pomada, Larsen Pomada Literary Agents. (June)

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