|Heather Wells was once a teen singing sensation. But after a string of bad luck events (her mother ran off with Heather's money and her manager, her recording contract was canceled, and she discovered her fiancé, Jordan, with another woman), she has taken a job as assistant dorm manager at a New York City college. At Fischer Hall, she's responsible for a variety of jobs, such as helping when the soda machine malfunctions and taking drunk students to the hospital.
Heather lives close to the college, in the top floor apartment of a building owned by her ex-fiancé's hunky detective brother, Cooper. Jordan is still after Heather to get back together, which is never going to happen. Probably. In fact, Heather nurses a secret passion for nice guy Cooper, who unfortunately doesn't appear to consider Heather to be girlfriend material in any way.
Elizabeth Kellogg, a freshman who dies in Fischer Hall, is found at the bottom of the elevator shaft. Heather is troubled. Sure, students have been known to indulge in the deadly game of elevator surfing --- but only the (usually drunk) males. And only in packs. If the dead girl wasn't alone when she was supposedly elevator surfing, where were her friends? Elizabeth was a preppie; as a group, preppies aren't likely to elevator surf. The more Heather thinks about Elizabeth's death, the less it adds up. In fact, Heather can't help but wonder (although she tries not to) if Elizabeth was pushed. Is Fischer Hall an unsafe place, with a murderer running rampant? Or, just as disturbing, did someone see the girl fall and not report it?
Then, incredibly, another dead female freshman is found at the bottom of the elevator shaft. When Heather discovers that the desk elevator key is missing, she contacts Cooper and insists he help her solve the mystery. Cooper though believes that Heather is pursuing the mystery angle because she misses the adrenaline rush of her singing career. That ticks Heather off because it's so untrue. Or is it?
The already fast-paced plot quickens when Heather discovers that the two dead girls had things in common: they were both virgins and had interfering mothers, according to the dorm records. It's not too long before she stumbles across a certain individual, but she seems to be the only one who suspects this person. Next thing she knows, her life is in danger. Or is it?
Anyone who has read Meg Cabot's teen books knows that the author dishes out one delightful read after another --- and she doesn't disappoint with SIZE 12 IS NOT FAT. As always, her characters are real and truly hilarious, the plot is lively, and the romance plays well. Heather is an endearing sleuth with believable motivations. This book is pure entertainment, laugh-out-loud fun with an intriguing mystery woven through --- perfect for a long winter's read in front of a roaring fire.
My only complaint: WHY must we wait until January 2007 for the next Heather Wells book? I can't wait that long!
Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon on January 23, 2011