Nina Willdorf
May 14, 2004 AT 04:00 AM EDT

If Nancy Drew had a closet full of couture, she’d be the star of former art critic Kandel’s pulpy fashion-forward mystery. While researching a biography of Perry Mason creator Erle Stanley Gardner, vintage-wearing vixen Cece Caruso finds herself attempting to crack a dusty murder case Gardner abandoned 40 years ago. Kandel demonstrates an equally sharp eye for dramatic plot twists and creative outfits (”Did I dare don a snood?”). With a well-spun plot and clever writing (”The only thing about me that’s a size six is two-thirds of one foot”), this quick clip of a novel will appeal to fans of whodunits and designer duds alike.

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