Full Service Blonde: A Copper Black Mystery

by Megan Edwards

Full Service Blonde

A working girl is found dead in the desert. Can a calendar girl uncover the truth?

It’s Christmastime in Sin City when aspiring journalist Copper Black meets Victoria McKimber, an outspoken prostitute at one of Nevada’s legal brothels. She’s offered Copper the exclusive right to tell her story. Not only will the Las Vegas Light’s “calendar girl” get a byline, but she can also impress her boyfriend and parents when they arrive for the holidays.

Copper is busy with work, Christmas shopping, and fantasizing about a whole week with her boyfriend, whom she hasn’t seen in six months. She’s also helping her brother, a civic-minded pastor who is spearheading plans for a new center to serve the homeless. Things are hectic but under control when shocking news breaks. Victoria McKimber has been found dead in a muddy ditch on the outskirts of town.

As she investigates Victoria’s violent death, Copper puts her own life in jeopardy and discovers that her brother is the target of a sinister plot. As Christmas and the new year approach, Copper searches for answers, evades enemies, and races against time to save her brother. And unless she can expose the truth about Victoria McKimber, somebody just might get away with murder.

Full Service Blonde, the prequel to Megan Edwards’ GETTING OFF ON FRANK SINATRA is now available in bookstores and available online wherever fine books are sold.

Winner, GOLD 2018 IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award for Fiction: Mystery
Winner, SILVER 2019 IPPY Award for Mystery/Cozy/Noir

Author picture

Megan Edwards is the author of the recently published novel A Coin for the Ferryman. Her other books include the travel memoir Roads from the Ashes: An Odyssey in Real Life on the Virtual Frontier, the humor book Caution: Funny Signs Ahead, the award-winning Copper Black mystery novels Getting off on Frank Sinatra and Full Service Blonde, and the award-winning novel Strings: A Love Story. Edwards holds a B.A. in classics from Scripps College and an M.A. from Claremont Graduate University. She has lived and traveled extensively in Europe and spent nearly seven years “on the road” all over North America. Now at home in Las Vegas, Nevada, she is working on her next book.

For more information, visit MeganEdwards.com and connect with Megan on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Goodreads.

“”Full Service Blonde” is an original and riveting mystery by a master of the genre. An unfailingly entertaining read replete with unexpected and narrative driven twists and turns, “Full Service Blonde” is an especially and unreservedly recommended addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections.” — Midwest Book Review

“Readers will enjoy smart, sassy Copper as she handles family and professional crises with aplomb” — Publisher’s Weekly

“After Victoria’s body in found in the desert, Copper is determined to solve the murder of a woman she had started to admire… An entertaining mystery” –Lesa Holstine, Library Journal

“What a fascinating book. I was impressed by the storyline and the characters were all well written and complex. Where there are complex storylines combined with intriguing characters the reader experience is magnified tremendously. To have a book that is well written as well as entertaining is a delight. Reading is about escaping your world and entering another one. The word building was phenomenal in this book. Here I forgot about my own life and was immersed in the world created by the author.”–Asmaa Gayyum, Goodreads.com (03/17/2021)

“This book really surprised me, because honestly most of the mystery kind of books I’ve read hasn’t been my cup of tea. But I really liked this one, I think it helped that the main character was smart and witty! I’d love to read the next book in the series.”–Moony MeowPoff, Netgalley.com (01/14/2020)

“This book is so fun and sassy! It would make for a good vacation read”–Kelly Kristensen, Goodreads.com

“Full Service Blonde indeed. A great concept for a story. Behind the scenes at the house of ill repute. I liked the Madame, and I appreciate what she was actually trying to do. Copper Black is witty and brave and dynamic. I like her. I wasn’t sure what to expect from this story. The plot is solid and unfolds very well. I read this fairly quickly because it’s so good. I recommend this one.” –Jamie Bass Netgalley.com (01/30/10)

“I loved this fast-paced murder mystery. Full of eccentric characters and twists in the storyline, “Full Service Blonde” provides the reader with a great escape to Las Vegas, without having to get off the couch. I loved how the author managed to keep me on my toes with unexpected surprises. The characters are quite entertaining. Giving Copper two hot men in her life also added to the fun. Even if she chose to be faithful, the sexual tension was still obvious and totally enjoyable. Being that it is known as Sin City, Las Vegas is the perfect setting for this adventure. I would recommend getting both books so that you have the next one ready to go. I wish I did! I also recommend this book for a reader’s group. It will definitely stimulate some lively conversations!” –Paige Lovitt, Reader Views

***** “I started this book and was hooked. Funny, dark and complex all at the same time it gives a lot of food for thought on very serious topics like environment and what is the person behind the sex worker. A happy discovery!” –Anna Maria Giacomasso, NetGalley

Full Service Blonde is a fantastic read—light on mystery, and heavy on romance and drama…a breezy, entertaining mystery dealing with prostitutes, thieving cats, and the bustling Vegas strip. It would make for a perfect poolside escape, or a work to devour on a flight to Vegas.” –John M. Murray, Foreword Reviews

Full Service Blonde was an absolute blast to read, and I am so glad to have stumbled upon it. Copper Black is a journalist turned sleuth, who found herself in the midst of a potential murder investigation quite by accident. She’s smart, witty, snarky, and just a bit naive, and following her along as she tried to solve the case was like sitting down with a bag of the best popcorn. I couldn’t stop shoveling handfuls of this story into my mouth. Full Service Blonde is a perfect mix of women’s fiction and amateur sleuthing. I’m highly recommending it” –Amber, Midwest Ladies Who Lit

**** “I’m a huge Megan Edwards fan and was so excited to read Full Service Blonde as I had read her other Copper Black novel. This one did not disappoint! Smart and sassy Copper is a “take no prisoners” twenty-four-year old journalist working in Vegas. With a quirky family and long-distance boyfriend, Copper takes on the murder of a prostitute and also discovers a plot that targets her brother. With lots of humor and great details about Vegas, this novel showcases Copper as a no-nonsense, intrepid young woman with a zest for life who won’t back down in the face of adversity! Another winner!” –Anne Foster, Litsy.com

***** “Full Service Blonde is not only an entertaining mystery, it is a Las Vegas buffet of situations that prove that what happens in Vegas can happen anywhere… anywhere that has legal brothels an hour away in one direction and a Sekhmet Temple an hour away in the opposite direction. This book might be considered a cultural guide to Las Vegas with its description of actual places and its veiled references to well-known Las Vegas places and personalities, but it’s first and foremost a superb story with a likeable and believable cast of characters.” –Ruth Mormon, RoadTrip America Book Reviews

**** “Copper Black is an aspiring journalist, she has moved to Las Vegas and is hoping to do well and further her career, and somewhere along the way she manages to get caught up in a murder investigation. I loved this book. It has humour and crime and Copper is a fabulous girl.” –Tracy Shepard, NetGalley Reviewer

**** “Cooper is a journalist with an attitude. Cooper went to Las Vegas to get her first job working on a newspaper. Cooper wants to put out a good story so she can get the byline. Cooper’s family is a bit different and Cooper has a long distance boyfriend. I liked this story a lot. I laughed at times while reading this even though it involved a murder. I liked that Cooper wouldn’t back down type of person. I also liked the author showed us a little of the legal prostitution business in Las Vegas. I advise you to read the first book in this series to pull things together. I felt this was a well written book. Also I liked the plot as well as the pace a lot. I also liked the mystery involved in this book. I was however a bit disappointed with the ending. But I did really like the characters and the ins and outs in this book and I recommend it…” –Angel Hatfeld, NetGalley Reviewer

**** “This is my first book by this author and I’m happy to say that it was an enjoyable experience. The story was realistic and entertaining with fleshed out characters and an intriguing plot. I look forward to reading books from this author in the future. ” –Beatrice George, Goodreads.com

“She’s a feisty journalist with an attitude I absolutely adore and a sense of humor I can laugh out loud to. I can see being real life friends with her. Here we are at a prequel to the Frank Sinatra book and we get to see how Copper fell in love with Las Vegas. A moderately paced, fun mystery sprinkled with humor and life. I look forward to seeing where Copper ends up in future adventures. ” –Chandra Claypool, wherethereadergrows.com

**** “I haven’t read any book from Megan Edwards before Full Service Blonde but it’s a beautiful discovery. I really enjoyed this light mystery.” –Sophie Zaretto, Goodreads.com

“Megan Edwards takes us through a Las Vegas both ordinary and odd. Her narrator’s mix of humor and innocence plays nicely against the city’s colorful grit as she encounters a parade of unsavory — yet complicated — characters in an effort to unearth the details of a murder. Told with warmth and wit, and ripe with suspense, this book is a delightful read”—Heather Skyler, author of the novels The Perfect Age, and Vegas Girls.

“This is the second Copper Black book I have read and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Copper is a fitting tribute to all the “intrepid, case-solving, women” who have come before her. She is certainly a direct, and adorable descendant of Nancy Drew and Kinsey Milhone. This book was absolutely a delightful read” –Natalie Lukas, Librarian and NetGalley Reviewer

**** “Megan Edwards certainly didn’t disappoint in her second novel in the Copper Black series. While this book had a greater focus on character development and less on action, it still contained enough mystery and murder to keep you intrigued to the last page. Full Service Blonde is a perfect, light beach read if you like a little bit of murder and prostitutes with your romance! –Rebecca Guthrie, Goodreads.com

***** “Okay, I loved this book. It’s short, sassy, and packed to the brim with murder, mystery, and some controversial issues to boot. The balance between humour, investigation, and stepping into some questionable situations was really well done. It’s the perfect book to accompany your winter vacation when it comes out this fall.” –Jessica Maculay, MiniMacReview

**** “Entertaining and well-written. It was a book that I couldn’t put down. Liked it a lot. Read it quickly.” –Jeneille Lewis, NetGalley.com

**** “This is a fun read that gives you a real feel for a complex character that you’d only find in Los Vegas..” –Michael Guillebeau, NetGalley.com

***** “Megan Edwards did a great job developing an interesting and unique plot for a book.” –Laurie Beemer, Educator, Goodreads.com

Friday, December 9

I carry business cards that read “Copper Black, Assistant Editor.” To my parents, they’re reassuring proof I’m a bona fide journalist, but what my title really means is that I update show listings and bring caffe lattes to Chris Farr, the arts and entertainment editor. But my parents are in Connecticut, where it’s far more satisfying to imagine me interviewing celebrities.

“Copper,” my mother will say on the phone, “I read that Bill Clinton was in Las Vegas last week. Did you meet him?”

No, Mom. I was standing in line at Starbucks.

Not that I haven’t learned a lot in my nearly eight months in Las Vegas. I know about high pollen counts and flash floods, the shortage of obstetricians, and the abundance of Mormon churches. I’m an expert at giving and following directions using casinos as landmarks. I know that when real Nevadans said “Nevada,” the VAD rhymes with MAD. Only newscasters broadcasting from Rockefeller Center say Ne-VAH-da. Well, I used to, too, but I’ve acclimatized.

Even so, I still have a lot to learn, even about subjects as ordinary as the good old-fashioned Yellow Pages. Remember those big fat books we used to use as booster seats and doorstops? I thought they had died out along with phone booths, but there’s a whole bookcase full of them at The Light. They’ve been relegated to the far side of the lunchroom, probably their last stop on the road to extinction, but there they are. I was eating lunch alone that Friday, so out of curiosity, I pulled one out to keep me and my ramen noodles company. I had just returned to my table when a familiar but unwelcome raspy voice fell on my ears.

“Hey, blondie, help me out and turn to ‘Entertainers’ in the Yellow Pages you’ve got there.”

I looked up to see Ed Bramlett leering at me from his usual spot near the windows. He covers business at The Light. Next to him, wearing a similar expression, was J.C. Dillon, who has the local government beat. They both have at least thirty years on me, and they liked nothing better than to see me blush. When I first arrived, they could turn me crimson in a matter of moments, but I’ve toughened up.

“It’s Copper,” I said, looking back down. “Do you need some entertainment, Ed?” I hoped I sounded sufficiently sarcastic.

“Not when I have you, sweetie,” Ed said. J.C. emitted a snort that was supposed to pass for a laugh.

I should have ignored them, but I flipped to the “E” section. I know now that I should not have been expecting discreet ads for piano players, but I was still a Vegas newbie.

“FULL SERVICE BLONDES,” read the three-inch headline staring me in the face. I looked up, and Ed smiled triumphantly as I felt my cheeks warming. I am the world’s fastest blusher, and I was glad I had worn my hair long that day. It covered my ears, which always heat up even more violently than my face. But I wasn’t embarrassed. I was angry. Ed had succeeded in turning me red again.

Paperback:  $15.00 US / $20.50 CDN ISBN: 9781945501005 — First Edition:  November 2017
ePUB: $9.99 US / $13.60 CDN  ISBN: 978-1945501098
Audiobook: Unabridged, narrated by Em Eldrige
$26.00 US / $35.53 CDN  ISBN:  978-1945501104

Related Books

Getting off on Frank Sinatra: A Copper Black Mystery

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A scorching Las Vegas summer is about to get even hotter. Aspiring journalist Copper Black has just found out that her boyfriend is responsible for his not-quite-ex-wife’s pregnancy. An unexpected house-sitting job at a notorious Las Vegas “party house” should provide not only a pool with a swim-up bar but also much-needed distraction.
"Edwards makes an assured fiction debut. This amusing mystery stars aspiring journalist Copper Black, a contributor to a Las Vegas newspaper, who must navigate a multitude of personal and professional hurdles...Copper learns enough secrets to make deadly enemies before emerging bruised, battered, victorious, and primed for new comic adventures."— Publisher's Weekly
"Copper's debut has enough pizzazz to make readers want to try just one more roll of the dice.”— Kirkus Reviews

Strings: A Love Story

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The Merino Rose Will the Merino Rose bring the two star-crossed lovers together at last, or will their love live only in the melancholy sound of distant violins?
"Edwards’s prose glides as smoothly as Ted’s playing as she articulates how deeply teen love shapes her characters’ adult lives. Readers wanting to dwell on the melancholy of ill-timed loved will devour this beautiful novel." — Publisher's Weekly

Roads From the Ashes: An Odyssey in Real Life on the Virtual Frontier

by Megan Edwards

When wildfire destroyed her home in the hills above Los Angeles, award-winning author, Megan Edwards seized the opportunity that her sudden "stufflessness" offered. She hit the road with her husband and dog in the Phoenix One, the four-wheel-drive motorhome that "rose from the ashes." This is the story of how a sabbatical that began with no itinerary and no return date grew into a five-year North American odyssey with a mission" "to be at work, at home, and on the road, all at the same grand moment."
"In Roads from the Ashes, Megan Edwards and her husband Mark face this decision after their house in the hills of Pasadena, California, burns down in the Altadena wildfires of 1993. Finding themselves without a single thing to anchor them, they decide—reasonably enough—to wander. They scrape together the money to buy a four-wheel-drive behemoth of a home on wheels, and together with their dog Marvin they set out to reinvent themselves and their definition of home. Edwards also explores matters of identity—trying on new labels like homeless, unemployed, finding that they don’t fit, and that the old labels don’t either. There is also the inevitability of tension, bickering, of outright civil warfare in such close quarters, as well as the ability of a well-placed geothermal hot spring to heal heart, soul and marriage."--Tiffany Pace, (Mind Bets) (06/01/2019)
"This is an excellent memoir, originally published twenty years ago but well worth the re-run. By the end you will find yourself appreciating the introduction of life as the Edwards lived it for the seven years they traveled. An excellent picture of California life in the 1990's, the personal pain of losing all you possess in a single day, and the joys and angst of following your heart down back country roads in a four wheel drive motorhome." --Bonnie Reed Fry,
"This is a book to stir dreams of distant places, a remarkable journey down unknown roads of travel and self-exploration. Edwards relates the stories of their Amrican adventures and misadventures in the compelling style of a novelist, with humor, drama and brilliant imagery. A journey worth taking." --Al Martinez, Los Angeles Times (from a review of the 1999 edition)

Purchase Roads From the Ashes: An Odyssey in Real Life on the Virtual Frontier