Thursday, April 10, 2008

The Carrot Cake Murder: A Hannah Swensen Mystery

by Joanne Fluke
Kensington Books, 2008
Tenth in the series; includes recipes.
When Gus shows up just in time for a family reunion, after a 25 year absence from Lake Eden, his family is thrilled. They also have a lot of questions for him: why did he disappear in the middle of the night without telling anyone where he was going? Why did he stay out of contact? What has his life been like?

Gus appears to have a lot going for him - he flashes a lot of money around, treats everyone to an expensive brunch, tells them about the nightclub businesses he owns, and makes like he's a bigwig. But when he turns up dead on the second day of the reunion, it quickly becomes clear that not everything was what it seemed. There are several people who might have wanted him dead.
Hannah, our amateur sleuth and professional cookie baker, has her work cut out for her. Working with (and against) local cop and sometimes boyfriend, Mike, and with the able assistance of her family and other sometimes boyfriend, Norman, Hannah starts piecing things together. Can she protect her business partner's dad from being falsely accused? Will she catch the killer before he - or she - strikes again?

I knew "whodunit" early on, but it didn't spoil the read because I still needed to know all the threads that pulled it together. I recommend this series, but suggest you read them in order, starting with The Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder. The only book that really disappointed was The Sugar Cookie Murder, but you might want to read it for the romance angle...

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