Chris Cavender introduces a new mystery series with
A Slice of Murder, and it's a saucy debut. The two main characters are fun together; there's a vast selection of possible villains, and it's a small town cozy mystery. It has all the ingredients needed for an enjoyable treat.
Eleanor Swift is a widow who owns a pizzeria in a small town, Timber Ridge, North Carolina. With the help of her sister, Maddy, she makes pizza, buses tables, and, when her staff fails to show up, even delivers pizza. Unfortunately, it was a pizza delivery that put her in hot water. One night, she took a pizza to a house where she found a body. She immediately called 911, but, since she had publicly slapped the victim, the chief of police, Kevin Hurley, thought she was the perfect suspect. It didn't help that she had dated Hurley in high school. In fact, it came as an added insult when he told his son he couldn't continue to work at the pizzeria.
When Eleanor feels her restaurant is threatened, she falls in with Maddy's scheme to investigate the murder. Maddy, who devours mysteries, feels they know enough of the gossip and people in Timber Ridge to find the killer. It's a small town, with a number of people who had reason to kill the victim, from the mayor and his wife, to the victim's neighbor and sister. So, which of those suspects is shooting at Eleanor?
A Slice of Murder is a promising start to a new mystery series. Eleanor and Maddy are mature characters, sisters who are supportive of each other, which is a welcome departure from many mysteries. Eleanor has some problems getting close to people. "Since my widowhood, I'd become fiercely independent, almost too proud or stubborn to take help from anyone else." But, Maddy keeps her grounded. Although Maddy has been married four or five times, she's the one with a sense of humor, the one who insists on calling the police for help.
A Slice of Murder might be the first book written under Chris Cavender's name. But, the name is a pseudonym for author Tim Myers, who has written other successful cozy mysteries under his own name, as well as the names of Elizabeth Bright and Melissa Glazer. This book might be just a slice of Myers' mystery background, but his writing style is now well-seasoned. A Slice of Murder is a savory treat for cozy mystery lovers, and we'll be waiting for seconds. "More, please," Chris Cavender.
Chris Cavender's website is www.timmmyers.net
A Slice of Murder by Chris Cavender. Kensington Books, ©2009. ISBN 9780758229489 (hardcover), 304p.
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