Sherry Frazzelle is back to being Sherry Oliveri, her divorce all but final and her new life in full swing. Her part-time job is helping her father with his hooked-rug business, and her full-time passion is competitive cooking. But murder is about to rock their little Connecticut town . . .
Erno Oliveri made sure to be on set for his daughter’s cook-off appearance on Sunny Side Up with Brett and Carmell. Or as it’s now known, Sunny Side Up with Carmell and Brett—since the ambitious young Carmell seems to have the producer and station owner eating out of her hand. But the important news is that Sherry has bested the competition with her Spicy Toasted Chickpea and Almond appetizer and clinched the spatula-shaped trophy. It’s her shining moment—until everything goes dark.
A quick-moving storm has knocked out power to the studio—and when the lights come back up, Carmell is at her desk with a sharp object lodged in her neck. The weapon is an unusual tool, used by craftsmen who make hooked rugs. Has someone taken corporate backstabbing to a new level, and framed Erno in the process? If Sherry’s going to protect her dad and their family name, she has to find out where he was when the lights went out . . .
Includes Recipes from Sherry’s Kitchen!
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Second book in series!
Final Roasting Place by Devon Delaney is the second novel in A Cook-Off Mystery series. Sherry Oliveri is appearing on Sunny Side UP with Carmell and Brett to compete in the News Twelve Appetizer Cook-Off in Augustin, Connecticut. Sherry takes home the prize with her Spicy Toasted Chickpea and Almond Bites. If her father, Erno had been the judge, the mushroom appetizer would have won (he certainly scarfed down enough of them). Before Sherry and Erno can depart the station, the power goes out. When electricity is restored, Carmell Gordy is slumped over the news anchor desk with something metal sticking out of her neck. The weapon turns out to be a rug hooking tool that points the police in Erno’s direction. Erno ends up collapsing and on doctor ordered bed rest. Sherry and her friend, Amber Sherman come up with a plan to clear Erno and find the Carmell’s killer. They soon learn that Carmell was not popular at the station because of her ambitious nature. When the killer strikes again, Sherry knows she must be getting close. Which one of her suspects is guilty of the killings?
Final Roasting Place can be read as a standalone for those of you who have not picked up Expiration Date. The author provides the necessary background on Sherry, her friends, family and why she enters cooking competitions. I found Final Roasting Place easy to read with steady pacing. There is plenty of shopping, cooking and baking in the story. Food is worked into all aspects of the book. Sherry is a type A personality who likes things done a certain way and items their place. I am glad that her panic attacks are not as frequent, and she is learning to deal with them (breathing techniques). I am happy she went back to her maiden name of Oliveri, so she will quit telling people how to properly pronounce Frazzelle. Now, though, Detective Raymond Bease (like grease) is doing it. Sherry’s friend, Amber Sherman returns in Final Roasting Place. She is a lovely individual with a kind, caring personality. Amber rushes to town when she heard about Erno’s troubles and is offering to help with the shop and clear his name. The conversations between Sherry and father are awkward. I do like that they have a close relationship and Erno supports Sherry in her cooking endeavors. There is a similar problem with the dialogue between Sherry and Detective Raymond Bease. There are two cute dogs in the story, Bean and Chutney. Bean needs a home since his owner, Carmell passed away. The mystery has ties to the town’s upcoming Founder’s Day celebration. There is misdirection, several suspects and pointed clues. I loved the unique murder weapon. If you are an avid mystery reader, you will find the whodunit easy to solve. I enjoy the rug hooking aspects of the story. There is hand dyeing of yarn, descriptions of rugs and explanation on how to use the tool. I would love a cozy mystery series based on a rug hooking store. I am giving Final Roasting Place 3 out of 5 stars. There are recipes for a few of Sherry’s dishes at the end of the book. Final Roasting Place is a light-hearted cozy mystery with food descriptions that will have your mouth watering.