Good day! Grab a hot drink from the kitchen, cuddle with the cat, and enjoy this excerpt from a cozy mystery, "Ladle to the Grave" by Connie Archer.
Connie Archer is the national bestselling author of the Soup Lover’s Mystery series from Penguin Random House (Berkley Prime Crime). A Spoonful of Murder, A Broth of Betrayal, A Roux of Revenge and Ladle to the Grave are set in the imaginary village of Snowflake, Vermont. A Clue in the Stew will be released in April 2016. Connie was born and raised in New England and now lives on the other coast. You can visit her at www.ConnieArcherMysteries.com, Facebook.com/ConnieArcherMysteries and Twitter @SnowflakeVT.
One woman stepped forward and doused her candle on the stone altar. She grasped the bowl in both hands. Cordelia paused, about to speak, but before she could utter a word, the woman drank the brew in its entirety. Cordelia stared at her, then filled the bowl again as a second woman stepped forward.
A strangled sound came from the lips of the first woman to drink. She gasped, clutching her throat. Her eyes grew large in panic as she tried to speak. Her chest heaved with the effort to breathe. She dropped to the ground as her legs crumpled beneath her. The others watched helplessly as the woman lay before them, retching and gasping for air.
“Agnes,” Emily cried out.
“What’s wrong?” Cecily asked.
Someone replied in alarm. “She can’t breathe. Help her!”
“Let me through. I know CPR,” Emily Rathbone pushed the women aside. They stepped back and stared as Agnes continued to gasp. Emily struggled to lift Agnes’s head and open her jaw while Agnes writhed violently.
“Help me hold her.” Emily shouted. Two of the women knelt. One held Agnes’s arms and the other, her legs. Emily tilted Agnes’s head and checked her throat. “There’s nothing there. Nothing’s interfering with her breathing. Maybe it’s an allergic reaction.” She deftly rolled Agnes to her side. Agnes’s head fell forward, her movements still violent. She retched again and whispered, “help me.” Then her body went limp.
Complete stillness filled the clearing. No one spoke. Someone finally whispered, “Is she breathing?”
Emily felt for a pulse while the women watched in silence. She looked up at their concerned faces. “Agnes is gone.”
By the Spoonful is Snowflake, Vermont’s most popular soup shop, but owner Lucky Jamieson doesn’t have any time to enjoy her success—she’s too busy trying to keep a lid on false accusations against her loved ones…It’s almost May, and some of the local ladies have organized a pagan celebration in the woods to welcome spring. But the evening goes terribly wrong when one of the attendees winds up dead, apparently poisoned by an herbal concoction prepared by Lucky’s grandfather, Jack.Lucky’s sure her grandfather could not have made such a tragic mistake. But before she can clear him of suspicion, her best friend, Sophie, is diverted from planning her wedding to By the Spoonful chef Sage DuBois when she finds a dead man floating in the creek on her property. Now it’s up to Lucky to get both Sophie and Jack out of hot water before a killer stirs up more trouble…Recipes included!
Series: Soup Lover's Mystery #4
Release Date: March 3, 2015
Formats: paperback, ebook
Buying Links: Amazon* | OmniLit* | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository* | iBooks* |
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