Why I bought it: Two reasons: the title and the fact that it's "A Tarot Mystery". (Also, being used, it was pretty cheap.)
The Premise: When Alanis McLachlan's con-woman mother is murdered, she unexpectedly inherits the White Magic Five and Dime, her mother's New Age shop and tarot business located in Berdache, Arizona. She and her mother haven't actually spoken in twenty years, but Alanis still feels an obligation to find out who killed her and why. Even if it means taking over her mother's business and faking the ability to read the tarot cards in order to do it.
"I don't have any cats. They remind me too much of my mother. Beautiful, finicky, aloof, and you're the one who always has to clean up their crap."
"Every con artist of every kind knows how to cold-read a mark. I'd been doing it since before I could read books, and I was good at it. Mom had made sure of that."
"I was in a little desert town I didn't know, in an apartment with a stranger who may or may not have homicidal tendencies. The floor below us was a crime scene, while outside, somewhere nearby, was a man who said I'd die if I didn't leave. And now I was lying in my dead mother's bed ... If 'creepy' were a lottery, I'd just won."
My thoughts: This is an entertaining read. I loved the use of Tarot cards throughout the book. And Alanis is such a great character: street smart, fiercely independent, and full of sass. She's also pretty funny. I liked her a lot. I also liked how Hockensmith wove together Alanis's and her mother's past cons with the present mystery. This book is a fast, fun read that totally made me laugh.
Rating: 4/5 stars.