A PRETTY MESS (HarperCollinsPublishersAustralia) is the first book in novelist, Carla Caruso’s, Sexy Messy Mystery Series that features organizer-extraordinaire, Celeste Pretty and hunky builder Lenny Muscat teaming up to right the wrongs in the fancy-schmancy upscale enclave of Astonvale, outside Sydney, Australia.
Celeste has given up her Interior Designer business and has landed her first client who just happens to be celebrity Natalia Samphire, creator of the Ballet-Tastic barre work-out which is bigger than Zumba. Yummy mummy’s are throwing dollars and themselves, while signing up for classes at her brand new studios which aren’t even finished being built yet all with hopes to get tight buns. It’s Celeste’s job to turn the very cluttered Natalia’s working/living space into a fabulous colorful all-purpose, friendly and beautiful space to live and work – especially to entertain clients.
The ironic thing is that Miss Organized Celeste’s own father, is a hoarder, he can’t even live in his own home. He has to live in a bus behind his house and she tries to keep it a secret from people she comes across. One person she meets is Lenny Muscat who is also working on Natalia’s building project. The two of them start off as work associates, then friends, and it progresses and you know where it’s going, but my fingers aren’t going to type anything revealing. No way!
But something isn’t quite right on Natalia’s Astonvale project. First Celeste and then Lenny come across some unsavory comings and goings and if they hope to get paid, it’ll be in their best interests to solve the caper, which is just what they do.
Carla has a way of creating fun quirky secondary characters that get under your skin. You enjoy them while they appear and kind of miss them when they’re gone. Her assistant “Flip” made me laugh. She was smarter than I thought at first. Her best friend, Betty Lou, was another character I really enjoyed. The woman is a nanny for triplets – how can you not love her?
Celeste is the kind of character you’ll enjoy spending time with and watching her get into trouble and then end up barely saving the day. Of course, the best part is how she does it with that yummy hunk of hers, Lenny. It’s that ying and yang of love that keeps us coming back to romantic comedies. It works under Carla Caruso’s direction.
Thanks to http://www.netgalley.com and HarperCollins for a kindle copy of A PRETTY MESS in exchange for an honest review. Check out http://www.CarlaCaruso.com.au for all things Carla.


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