BEA'S BOOK NOOK "I can't imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once." C. S. Lewis “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” ― Oscar Wilde

Monday, November 27, 2017

Bea Reviews Of Spice and Men by Sarah Fox

Bea's Book Nook, Review, Of Spice and Men, Sarah Fox
Series: A Pancake House Mystery #3
Publisher: Alibi
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: November 7th, 2017
Buying Links: Amazon* | Kobo  | iTunes* | Barnes & Noble * affiliate links; the blog receives a small commission from purchases made through these links.

Blurb from goodreads:

Lights. Camera. Murder? Wildwood Cove’s star turn is soured by a sneaky killer in this delicious cozy mystery from the USA Today bestselling author of The Crêpes of Wrath.

Bonus content: includes original recipes inspired by the Flip Side Pancake House menu!

With a Hollywood film crew in town to shoot a remake of the horror classic The Perishing, the residents of Wildwood Cove are all abuzz. Even Marley McKinney, owner of The Flip Side Pancake House, can overlook the fact that the lead actress, Alyssa Jayde, happens to be an old flame of her boyfriend. After all, the crew loves Marley’s crêpes—so much so that Christine, the head makeup artist, invites her onset for a behind-the-scenes tour. But when Marley arrives, the special-effects trailer is on fire . . . with Christine inside.

The cops quickly rule Christine’s death a murder, and Alyssa a suspect. Marley’s boyfriend insists that the actress is innocent, but when Marley sticks her nose into the complicated lives of The Perishing’s cast and crew, she discovers more questions than answers. It seems that everyone has a hidden agenda—and a plausible motive. And as the horror spills over from the silver screen, Marley gets a funny feeling that she may be the killer’s next victim.

My Thoughts:

I was drooling as I read this book; some of the recipes sounded so darn good. The book is set in the fall so the recipes were seasonally appropriate, adding to their appeal. Sadly, the recipes shared are not ones I can eat due to allergies. :(

Marley has settled into her life in Wildwood Cove; she's getting a handle on running her pancake restaurant, has a steady relationship, and has several murder investigations under her belt. Just when her life seems to be running smoothly, things get bumpy again. A movie comes to town to shoot a remake of a classic horror movie. This was a good move on Fox's part. It opened the pool of murder suspects and made another murder in her small town a likely occurrence. The problem with so many cozies is that they lack believability as to how many murders can occur in a small town. I'm often surprised that Cabot Cove has any residents left. So the movie filming on location was a neat way around that problem.

Marley helps put out a trailer fire on the movie site but the woman in the trailer is dead, murdered as it turns out. Marley feels a connection to the woman and can't help but ask questions. Then she finds out that the prime suspect is the lead actress in the movie who also happens to be her boyfriend's ex. An ex he never mentioned, who expects him to influence his uncle, the chief of police, so that she's no longer a suspect. While I understood Marley being upset at how she found out about the ex, Alyssa, I thought it was immature of her to run away and refuse to talk to Brett. They finally did talk it out but it took too long. She did that in the last book too and I am surprised that Brett puts up with it. There was too much personal drama for my taste especially as Marley is quick to run away when her feelings get hurt.

Despite, or because of, her feelings about Brett and Alyssa, Marley decides to continue asking questions and investigating. She hopes that by either clearing Alyssa or proving her guilty, she can get Alyssa out of their lives. So she pokes around, becomes friendly with some of the cast and crew, and becomes a familiar sight on the film location. Marley handles herself well for an amateur; she's mostly smart and cautious as she investigates, though she makes a couple of stupid moves. In addition to the murder, there are pranks and thefts on the set that are slowing down production and costing money. But there's no lack of suspects or motives for the murder or the thefts, and narrowing them down is a challenge. The final reveal of the murderer was a complete surprise and I do mean complete. There weren't any hints along the way as to the identity. I was completely blindsided. There were a lot of threads to the mysteries and they intertwined. Marley and her helpers were persistent and thorough and left me wondering just what the police were doing.

"Of Spice and Men" offered up a convoluted mystery, lots of suspects, interesting characters, personal drama, yummy food, a peek at movie making, and an enjoyable story. It didn't wow me, but it did keep me reading. I had to know who the killer was because I couldn't figure it out.

3 comments:

  1. Oh I'm sorry to hear this didn't wow you. I have this series on my TBR but I don't like a convoluted mystery or when the killer kind of comes out of no where.

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    1. Yeah, I'm not a fan of the villain being a total surprise but I like the setting, and the food. :D It's not a great steries but it's decent.

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  2. Of Spice and Men is an excellent cozy mystery that has it all - a great lead, lots of suspects and a colorful plot. It even has a touch of romance. I definitely recommend it to anyone who enjoys cozies. As an added bonus there are yummy sounding recipes.

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