The Winter Market in the French Quarter is in full swing, but murder isn’t taking a holiday in the latest from the New York Times bestselling author of Parchment and Old Lace…
The holidays are a busy time for scrapbook shop owner Carmela Bertrand—but not so hectic that she doesn’t have time to enjoy browsing the booths at the Winter Market with her best friend Ava. The last thing the ladies expect to see is a lurching man stabbed by a serving fork, dying in front of them.
The victim is loathed restaurant critic Martin Lash, who posted his scathing reviews on the Glutton for Punishment website. And the prime suspect is New Orleans restauranteur Quigg Brevard—who was seen giving the critic a tongue-lashing minutes before someone stuck a fork in him. An old flame of Carmela, Quigg asks for her help, which does not please her current beau, Detective Edgar Babcock, to say the least.
Before her relationship is the next victim, Carmela needs to find a murderer who had no reservations about punishing the culinary curmudgeon…
Scrapbooking tips and recipes included!
About The Authors
Laura Childs is the New York Times bestselling author of the Tea Shop Mysteries, Scrapbook Mysteries, and Cackleberry Club Mysteries. In her previous life she was CEO/Creative Director of her own marketing firm and authored several screenplays. She is married to a professor of Chinese art history, loves to travel, rides horses, enjoys fund raising for various non-profits, and has two Chinese Shar-Pei dogs.
Laura specializes in cozy mysteries that have the pace of a thriller (a thrillzy!) Her three series are:
The Tea Shop Mysteries – set in the historic district of Charleston and featuring Theodosia Browning, owner of the Indigo Tea Shop. Theodosia is a savvy entrepreneur, and pet mom to service dog Earl Grey. She’s also an intelligent, focused amateur sleuth who doesn’t rely on coincidences or inept police work to solve crimes. This charming series is highly atmospheric and rife with the history and mystery that is Charleston.
The Scrapbooking Mysteries – a slightly edgier series that take place in New Orleans. The main character, Carmela, owns Memory Mine scrapbooking shop in the French Quarter and is forever getting into trouble with her friend, Ava, who owns the Juju Voodoo shop. New Orleans’ spooky above-ground cemeteries, jazz clubs, bayous, and Mardi Gras madness make their presence known here!
The Cackleberry Club Mysteries – set in Kindred, a fictional town in the Midwest. In a rehabbed Spur station, Suzanne, Toni, and Petra, three semi-desperate, forty-plus women have launched the Cackleberry Club. Eggs are the morning specialty here and this cozy cafe even offers a book nook and yarn shop. Business is good but murder could lead to the cafe’s undoing! This series offers recipes, knitting, cake decorating, and a dash of spirituality.
Short-listed twice for The Best American Mystery Stories, Terrie Farley Moran is delighted to introduce mystery fans to the Read ’Em and Eat café and bookstore, which debuted with Well Read, Then Dead. followed by Caught Read-Handed and Read to Death released in July of this year. The only thing Terrie enjoys more than wrangling mystery plots into submission is playing games and reading stories with any or all of her grandchildren.
My Thoughts This cozy mystery starts out in New Orleans in the Winter Market with Carmela Bertrand and her friend Ava. While there a man, dies right in front of the ladies with a big fork sticking out of his neck. The man, Martin Lash is a food critic for an online website called Glutton for Punishment. Martin is a nasty little man who writes reviews of restaurants that do not put them in the best light. In fact, his reviews hurt the restaurants to the point of no having business and the future of these restaurants are pretty bleak. So who is the killer? There are numerous suspects, including a friend and previous beau of Carmela's, Quigg Brevard. Martin had written a scathing review of Quigg's restaurant. Carmela is asked by Quigg to use her investigative skills and find out who the killer is. Against the wishes of the man she is currently seeing, Detective Edgar Babcock, she does just that. She also puts herself in extreme danger as she starts digging around. Another man is murdered, is it the same killer or just a coincidence that this man is killed with a butcher knife? Who is the killer and what are his/her motives? Can Carmela stay out of danger? Cozy mysteries are fun to read. I love a good crime thriller but once in a while reading a book where the violence and sex are toned down a bit is nice. Plus the fact that these type of stories are usually in a small community where everyone virtually knows everyone else and the main characters have some type of small business. This is the first book I have read by Laura Childs and I really enjoyed it. The descriptions of this New Orleans community makes the reader feel like they are right there. I found that the business that Carmela has, a scrapbooking store, to be quite interesting. I have never done any scrapbooking but it sounds like a fun hobby. I digress but again, I did enjoy the book, well written with a touch of humor. I may just read more by this author! "I received a free copy of this book and voluntarily chose to review"