Kitt Crowe's second Sweet Fiction Bookshop mystery whips up an array of intriguing suspects and motives into a diabolically deft read, perfect for fans of Jenn McKinlay and Joanne Fluke.
It’s summer festival time in Confection, Oregon, and that means a barrage of tourists making cash registers ring at Sweet Fiction Bookshop. But what should be bookseller Lexi’s most lucrative time of year turns disturbing when a member of the chamber of commerce suddenly dies of a heart attack. Not entirely unexpected—considering her family history—but it’s a different story when another chamber member dies just one week later…also, presumably, of natural causes.
Something about this doesn’t read right to Lexi. And it gets more unfathomable when her friend Dash—who dated both women—stands accused of murder! With Cookie, her lovable border collie mix, at her side and countless volumes of inspiration on her shelves, Lexi opens the book on another perplexing case. Who could have murdered two prominent townspeople without leaving even a hint of evidence on the scene? And why is an irksome-but-intriguing detective always seeming to catch her and Cookie working the case?
Lexi’s Confection Rose-colored glasses come off when she learns of thorny discussions among the council members, involving a string of secretive real estate transactions. Enlisting her faithful fellow members of the Macaroon Book Club, Lexi sets out to bind the clues together and clear Dash’s name. But if she can’t devise a clever trap for the real killer, she may soon end up with a very unhappily ever after of her own.
In Crowe's sprightly follow-up to 2021's Digging Up Trouble, bookshop manager Lexi Jones of tourist town Confection, Ore., is suspicious of the sudden death of real estate agent and chamber of commerce chair Marilyn Freeman. Though imperious Det. Chad Berg is more inclined to regard it as the result of a sudden heart attack, Lexi wonders if it might relate to shady property deals in the area. When Marilyn's rival, Rachel Nevis, also turns up dead, Lexi is convinced that the two cases are connected and is impelled to investigate when Dash Hagen, the brother of a friend of hers and a former lover of Marilyn and Rachel, becomes the police's prime suspect in Rachel's killing. Members of the Macaroons book club are more than willing to assist Lexi, despite Berg's hostility toward amateurs meddling in official investigations. Winning characters, slapstick interactions between Lexi and Berg, and an offbeat climax will keep readers riveted. Both fans and new readers will look forward to the inquisitive Lexi's next appearance.