The Diva Haunts the House by Krista Davis.*
In the latest book of the Domestic Diva mysteries, Sophie Winston is in charge of decorating a community haunted house. But her volunteers are resigning, complaining of seeing or hearing weird things. Sophie thinks they're letting their imaginations run a little too freely.
Meanwhile, Natasha Smith, rival diva, is again attempting to outdo Sophie by throwing her own Hallowe'en bash. The decorations in front of Natasha's house so realistic even the teenagers are frightened, but when Sophie pokes a dead pirate to prove to her niece that it's fake, she finds that the figure is a real human. The pirate is Patrick Starski, one of the guests at Natasha's party, and he's not just injured, but dead.
The police find two bloody marks on his neck, as though Patrick had been bitten by a vampire. Sophie knows this is not the case, but she's surprised by how many otherwise rational adults appear to believe that Patrick's death was caused by an erstwhile resident of Alexandria who claimed he was a vampire.
Sophie is truly a domestic diva. While morning coffee is brewing, she's whipping up a chicken marinade for her planned evening meal. When people drop by unexpectedly (which seems to happen on a regular basis) Sophie has frozen homemade baked goods she can pop in the microwave. Despite all this, Davis has managed to make her a likeable character who is enjoyable to read about.
Although this is already the fifth book in the series, the characters and plots have not grown stale. We are introduced to a new female police officer whose role might grow in future books. And, we still love to hate Natasha.
*FTC Full Disclosure: Many thanks to the publisher, who sent me a copy of the book for review purposes.