Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Sprinkle With Murder - Jenn McKinlay


Sprinkle With Murder
A Cupcake Bakery Mystery
Jenn McKinlay
Berkley Prime Crime

Mystery

At some point, every bakery owner must have to deal with a bridezilla or two. For Melanie Cooper and Angie DeLaura, the event is somewhat unexpected. They’ve been friends with Tate Harper forever; he even invested in their new shop, Fairy Tale Cupcakes. He just got engaged Christie Stevens, a fashion designer. Not only was the engagement a surprise, the demanding, arrogant Christie is just not what anyone thought of as Tate’s type.

To give the bakery some exposure, Christie agreed to a cupcake wedding ‘cake.’ But, since she’s so very special, she wants several new, original flavors, designed just for her that will match her wedding décor. And she wants ownership of the new recipes, too. Angie and Melanie soon find that she’s made this demand of every vendor, including the florist. For the sake of her friendship with Tate, Melanie knuckles under and agrees. She even agrees to an early-morning meeting at Christie’s studio to discuss things.

Arriving at the studio, Melanie finds Christie’s lifeless body. Unfortunately, she’s got one of Melanie’s original cupcakes in her hand. The police naturally find this suspicious and begin to look seriously at Melanie as a suspect. As the fiancé, Tate is also under scrutiny. To save herself, her friend, and her fledgling business, Melanie decides to do a little snooping of her own.

This is the first installment in a fun new series and it does a great job of laying the groundwork for future books. Melanie and Angie are a great pair; each woman is complex and realistic and they provide a great balance for each other. The mystery touches all of the main characters and it makes perfect sense that Melanie would want to take a few risks to find the real killer. There are enough suspects to make the chase interesting, but it never gets too complex to be a cozy mystery. The author provides several cupcake recipes and, I admit, I’m eager to try a couple of them. I’m interested to see where the series goes from here.

Rating: 7
March 2010
ISBN# 978-0-425-23342-9 (paperback)

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