Daryl Wood Gerber has found the perfect recipe for all of us who love cozy mysteries and food. Final Sentence launches her new Cookbook Nook series. Jenna Hart and her Aunt Vera open a culinary bookshop and cafe, The Cookbook Nook, in Crystal Cove, California. The store caters to those who love cookbooks and mysteries and books about food. If Gerber can't entice you with all the discussion of celebrity chefs, cookbooks, and cozy mysteries featuring food, she'll add all the discussion of food. Top it off with a murder mystery, and most cozy mystery readers will want to snatch up this book.
After her husband's tragic death in a boating accident, Jenna finally succumbed to her aunt's invitation, and agreed to become a partner in the cookbook shop. However, with her background in advertising, she added all kinds of other enticements, cooking gadgets and gifts, to entice shoppers. Then she invited her college roommate, celebrity chef and cookbook author, Desiree Divine, to appear at the store on opening day. A brilliant marketing idea!
Maybe not so brilliant. When Desiree arrived in town with her entourage, it stirred up trouble with a neighboring shopkeeper. And, Jenna heard that her trusted friend had once had an affair with Jenna's husband, and had hooked up with all of her boyfriends. Although she searched the town, Jenna failed to track Desiree down to have it out with her. A morning walk on the beach the next day did nothing to cool Jenna down. Instead, she was the one who uncovered Desiree's body. And, once it was known Jenna was looking for Desiree the night before, she's suddenly on the top of the suspect list.
Daryl Wood Gerber has put together a terrific cast of characters to welcome readers to Crystal Cove and the Cookbook Nook. Jenna may need help as an amateur sleuth, but her Aunt Vera, her new chef Katie Casey, and Jenna's friend Bailey are all there to offer advice and support. And, Gerber has avoided a problem I've commented on with amateur sleuths. She's given Jenna a full staff at the shop so she does have time to slip away and ask questions here and there.
Final Sentence brings together mystery, a hint of romance, talk of cookbooks, food and cozy mysteries. Gerber also introduces a cute kitten, Tigger. If that isn't enough to entice a cozy mystery reader, it's a lost cause. All the elements come together beautifully in this charming mystery.
Daryl Wood Gerber's website is www.darylwoodgerber.com (And, a note. Gerber also writes under her pseudonym, Avery Aames.)
Final Sentence by Daryl Wood Gerber. Berkley Prime Crime. 2013. ISBN 9780425258040 (paperback), 304p.
FTC Full Disclosure - The publisher sent me a copy of the book, hoping I would review it.