Double Dog Dare by Gretchen Archer is book 7 in the Davis Way Crime Caper Series. You can read this as a standalone book, I have not read the rest of the series and I did not feel like I missed anything.
Davis Way Cole is the head of security for the Bellissimo Resort and Casino in Biloxi Mississippi. For Davis life is great she has a loving husband, wonderful daughters and a peaceful life, that is until it’s interrupted by a murder at the appearance of Bootsy Howard, a witchy blast from Davis’s past, demanding a million dollars. If life wasn’t complicated enough this week the Southern Canine Association’s annual dog show is being held at the resort and she finds herself having to board one of the dogs in her own suite.
This is a fast-paced, hilarious book filled with interesting characters who have big personalities but have enough depth to stop them from creeping into stereotypes.
I listened to the audiobook version of this book, narrated by Amber Benson. For the most part, I enjoyed the narration but for me, one of the accents sounded a little robotic and it pulled me out of the story. Having said that I really struggle to find narrators with American accents that don’t sound robotic (which others have no issues with) to me so it probably wouldn’t bother most people.
Excerpt from Double Dog Dare by Gretchen Archer
“They were raised by their aunt because their parents got in a race with a train and lost. Splat. So their aunt, the creepiest woman on God’s green earth, raised them. She smells like eye of newt. Or bat wings. And she smells that way because she’s a rip-roaring witch. Certified. Papers. I swear, she casts spells on me. Her name is Bootsy. Her name should be Broomhilda.”
Vree could talk the stars out of the sky.
I believed she talked so she wouldn’t have to listen; there was always something Vree didn’t want to hear. When we were little girls, she didn’t want to hear my mother say it was time for her to go home and tried to talk Mother into letting her stay. When we were in elementary school, she didn’t want to hear her parents were divorcing and tried to talk them back together. When we were in high school, she didn’t want to hear she was failing, again, and talked herself all the way into a cap and gown. Vree talked over, under, and all the way through her life. I always thought she’d grow out of it, yet here we were, and she was still talking her head off. I wasn’t sure what it was adult Vree didn’t want to hear.
Bex and Quinn said, “Shiny, shiny, shiny.” Something she did want to hear.
She looked at them curiously. “They’re saying you’re pretty, Vree. That’s their word for pretty.”
She thanked them for the next five minutes.
They didn’t catch a bit of it.
They were right, though, Vree was pretty. She’d always been pretty, in a Marilyn Monroe sort of way. Think Marilyn Monroe on Red Bull. She was thirty-four years old with waist-length flyaway blonde hair, cocoa brown eyes, perfect skin, and wore her clothes two sizes too small. Her husband, Gooch the egg eater, looked like a tall Yosemite Sam—the ten-gallon hat, the handlebar moustache, the six-shooters. And Vree might be right about Gooch’s Aunt Bootsy. That woman was spooky. Unlike Vree, who truly believed, I gave up the notion Bootsy was a bona fide witch around the time I learned the truth about the Easter Bunny. Was Bootsy terrifying? Yes. A witch? No. Probably not. Surely to goodness, not. There was no such thing.