Friday, June 12, 2009

REVIEW: Eileen Davidson's "Dial Emmy for Murder"

Eileen Davidson is a true soap opera superstar. She has played Ashley Abbott on The Young and the Restless on and off since 1982, reprised the character on The Bold and the Beautiful for two years, was Kelly Capwell on Santa Barbara, and made daytime history when she played an unprecedented five characters on DAYS OF OUR LIVES, including a man named Thomas! If there is anyone who is prepared to write a book about the soap opera industry, it's Eileen Davidson! She does just that in the second installment of her soap opera mystery series, "Dial Emmy for Murder."

The protagonist of her book is Alexis Peterson, a popular soap opera actress who finds more murderous drama off-stage than on. In Davidson's first book, "Death In Daytime," Alexis (a.k.a. Alex) was accused of murdering her headwriter on The Yearning Tide and she had to play amateur detective to prove her innocence. In "Dial Emmy for Murder," Alex's life has seemingly settled down and she is now starring on The Bare and the Brazen as two characters -- Felicia, a psychiatrist, and Fannie, her unattractive twin sister. Alex has to wear a prosthetic nose and false teeth to play the role of Fannie which will remind Days of our Lives fans of her hilarious turn as Susan Banks.

“Alex, we love you! We love you! Why did you leave The Yearning Tide?”

Why did I leave? How could I stay on that show when the entire cast and crew had believed that I murdered the head writer? Could you work with a bunch of people who thought you were capable of such a horrendous thing?

But now I worked on The Bare and the Brazen and it was a great gig. I played two characters, one of which looked completely different from myself! I had a prosthetic nose and false teeth (made by the same guy who did Austin Powers’s). The hours were a little long sometimes because of the dual roles, but I was having a helluva good time. The primary character, Felicia Stewart, a psychiatrist, is the heroine of the show. She has a not-so-attractive twin sister, Fanny Stewart, who was given up for adoption and raised in the South. Fanny has bad teeth and an attitude to match. She’s jealous of her sister and always up to no good. Fanny’s the fun one to play, but then it’s always more fun to be bad. Unfortunately that can be true in real life, too.

Everything has settled down in her life for the most part until she is presenting at the Daytime Emmys. Her co-presenter, Jackson Masters, doesn't show and she goes on stage to present alone. Looking above the stage she sees a dead body hanging from the rafters. When the body falls down next to her, it turns out to be none other than Jackson Masters!

Alex once again becomes embroiled in a murder mystery when her hairdresser, who she has never been friendly with before, indicates he knows something about the murder, and asks that she meet him after work. When she goes to see him, he turns up dead too! Alex also crosses paths again with Detective Frank Jakes, who she had a flirtation with in "Death in Daytime."

Still dealing with their romantic feelings for each other, but not ready to admit to them yet, Alex and Frank are the kind of flirty and sexy couple you would be rooting for on any daytime soap. With a serial killer on the loose, Frank and Alex team up to find the killer and may find romance along the way. Ultimately, what "Dial Emmy for Murder" does best is present Alex Peterson as a true heroine -- the sort of woman who can take care of herself, has a wry sense of humor, is sexy without trying and wants to be the best mother she can be to her daughter, Sarah. Throughout the book, Alex finds herself in one perilous situation after another and always comes out on top. Alex is the type of character that daytime soap fans are missing these days.

Watch for one humorous situation where Alex is asked to speak at a special panel with fellow soap superstars Kim Zimmer, Susan Lucci and Melody Thomas Scott. Thankfully, all three get along with Alex. "Dial Emmy for Murder" is an easy, fun read, and one that can be enjoyed while lying on the beach, drinking a margarita. Filled with quirky characters, and a surprise twist, it's a book I would recommend reading.

Since this is part of a series of books, we are left with a cliffhanger. Could Alex once again be dealing with murder? Look for her latest novel, "Diva Las Vegas," due in early 2010.

ORDER THE BOOK: / Barnes & Noble / Borders / Indie Bound / Books-a-Million


  1. Thank you for your review. I was thinking of purchasing the book.

  2. You're very welcome. A lot of what we like seeing in our soaps are in this book. It's a love story at its core.

  3. This looks the perfect accompaniment to a day at the beach... now to schedule a day at the beach... :-)