Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: March 14th, 2017
Buying Links: Amazon* | Kobo | iTunes* | Barnes & Noble
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Blurb from goodreads:
From the author of The Crêpes of Wrath comes another decadent cozy mystery. This time, pancake house owner Marley McKinney is tangling with a salty troublemaker . . . and a ravenous killer.
Bonus content: includes original recipes inspired by the Flip Side Pancake House menu!
Tourist season’s in full swing in the small seaside town of Wildwood Cove, and Marley McKinney couldn’t be happier. Since taking over the Flip Side restaurant, she’s made a few close friends, adopted a cat named Flapjack, and started dating her childhood crush. The only cloud on the horizon is local nuisance Ida Winkler, who blames Marley for landing her nephew in prison. Trying to get a rise out of Marley, Ida’s been making crank calls and even vandalizing the pancake house.
The police can’t do much about the pranks, so Marley sets out to bury the hatchet once and for all. But someone’s beat her to it—in the most shocking way possible. After stumbling across Ida’s dead body, Marley’s suddenly the number-one suspect in her murder. Clearing her good name is going to be a tall order, but Marley’s not about to let Ida keep ruining her life—especially from beyond the grave.
The blurb says the book comes with bonus recipes but sadly those were not included in my eGalley. :( I was very disappointed as some of the waffles and pancakes sound amazing.
Although I didn't read the first book, this worked fine as a stand alone. Marley is settling into life in Wildwood Cove. She inherited her cousin's house and restaurant, quit her job to move to Wildwood, and struck up a romance with a guy she had a crush on in high school. Despite her cousin's death, her life is good. Until someone, though she's pretty sure she knows who, begins to vandalize her restaurant. Investigating that leads to her discovering the murdered body of the woman who may have been the vandal and that leads to her being a person of interest. Naturally Marley wants to clear her name and begins to investigate.
Marley was pretty apt for an amateur detective. Oh, she stumbled here and there and had a few moments where I was rolling my eyes, but she acquitted herself well overall. There were a few unlikely coincidences but those are pretty much de rigeur in cozy mysteries. There was a lot of page time devoted to Marley hanging out at the beach, going swimming and other daily activities. We didn't need that much detail or repetition. It also felt as if the romance between Marley and Brett was on the one hand flat, I didn't feel the connection between them, and on the other hand moved fast given the amount of angst that popped up out of nowhere on Marley's side. Where did the angst come from (we are eventually told that) and why? The relationship didn't seem to be progressing to a pint where that angst would have developed
Despite that, I liked Marley and the cast of characters. They're quirky but not overly so and most of them are nicely developed, with the exception of Brett, and his sister Chloe. Ivan was interesting and I look forward to seeing more of him. The mystery was complicated enough to keep me guessing though the ending was a bit deux ex machina.
Overall, I enjoyed the story (the yummy food references didn't hurt!) and hope to read more in the series.