Monday, January 26, 2015

Candy Apple Dead (A Candy Shop Mystery #1)

Author:  Sammi Carter
Genre:  Mystery

Two Stars

Abby Shaw has returned  to her hometown of Paradise, Colorado--leaving behind a career in corporate law and a cheating husband--to take over her aunt's candy shop, Divinity. But her sweet new life quickly turns sour when a fellow merchant dies in a fire. With all clues pointing to arson--and Abby's brother as the number one suspect--she must sink her teeth into finding the killer.


I know I don't give spoilers, but in this instance I feel I must in order to explain why I only gave this book two stars; that and the fact it is an older book and many readers have probably already read this, so you are forewarned...

Well, the mystery was decent, except.....

Abby moves to CO to take over her aunt's candy shop. Another shop owner is murdered and she wants to know why because a) they had a date that night and he didn't show up - yes, this is a big deal for her; the guy's dead but she still wants to know if she was just 'going to be another notch on his headboard' (go figure); and b) her brother is accused of the crime.

She also spends a lot of time harping on the fact that her ex-husband cheated on her. We get it. And she decides to question everyone in town - and there were quite a few - about the murder. So we get to meet a lot of really boring people.

Also, she sure has a lot of time on her hands for someone who's running a candy shop. She's the main cook but doesn't really spend any time cooking. And there is one scene where she's hosting a book club or something (it's her turn), and she puts out trays of candy for everyone - and silverware. I don't know about you, but I've never eaten a piece of candy with a fork. And I certainly wouldn't make that my staple for a couple of hours. You'd make yourself ill if that's all you ate (but she didn't mention any other food, so I guess).

The big thing that bothered me was the way she ate. She makes herself grilled cheese sandwiches and eats at Burger King and McDonald's. No home cooked meals for her. Fast food and fat, that's all she's interested in. Not to mention all the candy she consumes throughout the book. Yet it doesn't seem to do any damage to her physically. Huh.

The last things are the murderer doesn't even appear anywhere in the book until the last few pages - perhaps the author got attached to the people in the town and didn't want to kill any of them off, which happens occasionally, but I still find that annoying. It's almost like you're supposed to get involved with the characters, but so involved that we'll just throw someone else in here so you don't have to feel bad when they get caught; and that old standby of The Cop Who Likes You and Wants to Have a Relationship. There are so many books out there where the cop decides to get involved with the main character. Oh well.


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A Souffle of Suspicion (A French Bistro Mystery #2)

Author:  Daryl Wood Gerber Genre:  Mystery Hardcover; Digital Book ISBN #:  9781683315865 Crooked Lane Books 325 Pages $25.25; $9.99 ...