Tag Archives: Jenn McKinlay

Book Review: “Dark Chocolate Demise” by Jenn McKinlay (Cupcake Mystery #7)

darkchocolatedemise

 

Title:  Dark Chocolate Demise

Author:  Jenn McKinlay

Series:  Cupcake Bakery Mystery #7

 

Synopsis (from bn.com):

The New York Times bestselling Cupcake Bakery Mysteries bake up sweet surprises, but as the series continues, Mel and Angie are in for a fresh batch of trouble…

Scottsdale, Arizona, may not be the liveliest place on earth, but it’s never been as dead as this. Hundreds of fans have gathered together for the first annual Old Town Zombie Walk, and Mel, Angie, and the Fairy Tale Cupcake crew are donning their best undead attire to sell some horror-themed desserts to the hungry hordes.

But the fun turns to fright when Mel finds a real dead body in a prop casket outside of the bakery’s truck—and the corpse looks alarmingly like a zombie of their own. Knowing that Joe, Angie’s brother and Mel’s former flame, has been working on a dangerous mob case, Mel worries that the murder is a hit gone wrong and that someone near and dear was the real target. To keep any of her friends from winding up six feet under, Mel will do whatever it takes to find a killer—no matter how scary things get…

 

My thoughts:  Angie, Mel, Tate, and their fabulous cast of characters are back for a wonderful installment in the Cupcake Bakery Mystery.   I love the friendship between Mel, Angie, and Tate as well as of course the DeLaura brothers – it makes the books a pleasure, pleasure to read.

This wasn’t my favorite storyline – being centered around Halloween and zombies, but that is just my personal preference.

The book was fun, light, with a great cast of characters!  Loving this series and very much looking forward to the next installment – Vanilla Beaned!

And remember,

Books Are Life,

Heather

 

 

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Book Review – “Going Going Ganache” by Jenn McKinlay (Cupcake Bakery Mystery #5)

goinggoingganache

Title:  Going, Going, Ganache

Author:  Jenn McKinlay

Series:  Cupcake Bakery Mystery #5

Synopsis (from bn.com):

A new Cupcake Bakery Mystery from New York Times bestselling author Jenn McKinlay is icing on the cupcake!   After a cupcake-flinging fiasco at a photo shoot for a local magazine, Melanie Cooper and Angie DeLaura agree to make amends by hosting a weeklong corporate boot camp at Fairy Tale Cupcakes.  The idea is the brainchild of billionaire Ian Hannigan, new owner of SWS (Southwest Style), a lifestyle magazine that chronicles the lives of Scottsdale’s rich and famous. He’s assigned his staff to a team-building week of making cupcakes for charity.

It’s clear that the staff would rather be doing just about anything other than frosting baked goods. But when the magazine’s creative director is found murdered outside the bakery, Mel and Angie have a new team-building exercise—find the killer before their business goes AWOL.

 

My thoughts:  I love this cozy series.  I don’t know whether it is the talk of the delicious cupcakes they are baking in their bakery, the cozy space I imagine their bakery to be, or the great, funny characters, I just know I love this series.  I particularly enjoyed this 5th book in the series . . . it was like The Devil Wears Prada meets Hell’s Kitchen meets cozy mystery novel!  It was just plain funny and fun all the way through.

I enjoyed that we get a little more insight into some of the main characters and their relationships . . . particular between Mel and her beau?  Hmmm, what will happen.

This is a great, fun, quirky, tasty cozy mystery series that I highly recommend.  I of course will be all set and ready to read when the 6th book, Sugar and Iced, comes out in April 2014!  Bring it on!

And remember,

Books Are Life,

Heather

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Book Review: “Red Velvet Revenge” by Jenn McKinlay (Cupcake Bakery Mystery #4)

redvelvetrevenge  Title:  Red Velvet Revenge

Author:  Jenn McKinlay

Series:  Cupcake Bakery Mystery #4

Synopsis (from bn.com):

It may be summertime, but sales at Fairy Tale Cupcakes are below zero—and owners Melanie Cooper and Angie DeLaura are willing to try anything to heat things up. So when local legend Slim Hazard offers them the chance to sell cupcakes at the annual Juniper Pass rodeo, they’re determined to rope in a pretty payday!

But not everyone at the Juniper Pass is as sweet for Fairy Tale Cupcakes as Slim—including star bull-rider Ty Stokes. Mel and Angie try to steer clear of the cowboy’s short fuse, but when his dead body is found face down in the hay, it’s a whole different rodeo.

With a vengeful murderer on the loose, the ladies are quickly realizing that while they came to save their business, they may have to save themselves—and that’s no bull.

My thoughts:  Well Mel Cooper and her friend and fellow owner of Fairy Tale Cupcakes, Angie DeLaura are at it again.   Red Velvet Revenge is another great addition to the wonderful Cupcake Bakery Mystery series.

Mel and Angie are just great characters . . . funny, flirty, fierce, and feisty!  Of course, that is a great combination.

The story is fun and just an overall good cozy mystery!  Of course when I read these, I somehow pretend that I am a fabulous baker of cupcakes.  I photocopy all of the recipes in the back of the book and just know they will taste exactly like those of Fairy Tale Cupcakes . . . ok, well maybe not, but a girl can dream . . . after all isn’t that the fun of reading cozy mysteries 🙂

I strongly recommend this foodie cozy series.  I am going to start book #5, “Going, Going Ganache” even as we speak.

And remember,

Books Are Life

Heather

 

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Book Review – “Book, Line, and Sinker” by Jenn McKinlay (Library Lover’s #3)

booklinesinker  Title:  Book, Line, and Sinker

Author:  Jenn McKinlay

Series:  Library Lover’s Mystery #3

Publisher:  Penguin

 

Synopsis (from bn.com): “Avast” in pirate speak means what?*
Answering tricky reference questions like this one provides plenty of excitement for library director Lindsey Norris. But when a shocking murder is committed in her cozy coastal town of Briar Creek, Connecticut, the question of who did it must be answered before an innocent man gets the book thrown at him…   Lindsey is enjoying her second year in Briar Creek as the library director, meeting with the crafternoon club, and happily dating tour boat captain Mike Sullivan. But when a salvage company arrives in town to dig up treasure buried on Pirate Island over three hundred years ago, the locals are torn between protecting the island and welcoming the publicity.    In spite of the squabbling, Charlie Peyton, Lindsey’s downstairs neighbor, takes a job with the salvage company. But when Trudi Hargrave, the local tourism director who hired the company, is found murdered at the excavation site, Charlie becomes the chief suspect. To help him, Lindsey must do some digging of her own before the real killer buries the truth for good

 

My thoughts:  Book, Line, and Sinker brings us to the third installment of the Library Lover’s Mystery series.  Let go from her job as an archivist at Yale, Lindsey Norris finds herself the Library Director in the small town of Briar Creek, CT!

I do enjoy this series.  It offers many of the features of a good cozy mystery – charming, likeable characters; a quaint, cozy setting; an independent female character who all of a sudden decides she is Sherlock Holmes; budding romance; . . .

I must admit that I enjoy Jenn McKinlay’s Cupcake Bakery series a bit more.  There is something about this series that doesn’t hook me like other series I read.  I find it a bit odd that in the last two books, the actual murder part of the mystery doesn’t happen until about 1/3 of the way through the book.  This doesn’t so much build suspense for me as it does just make me want to get to the murder already.

Overall, an enjoyable read.  Quick, easy, and light with some likeable characters and some questions at the end which make you of course want to pick up the next book in the series . . .  “Read It and Weep”.

 

And remember,

Books Are Life,

Heather

 

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Book Review – “Due or Die” by Jenn McKinlay (Library Lover’s #2)

dueordie  Title:  Due or Die

Author:  Jenn McKinlay

Publisher:  Penguin

Series:  Library Lover’s Mystery #2

 

 

Synopsis (from bn.com):  Answering tricky reference questions is excitement enough for library director Lindsey Norris. Until a murder is committed in her cozy hometown of Briar Creek, Connecticut, and the question of who did it must be answered before someone else is checked out—for good.

 

My thoughts:  This is the second book in the Library Lover’s Mystery series.  I must say that I do enjoy this series.  I find the characters charming, warm, and inviting and the storylines fun!  This particular book truly puts the cozy in the “cozy mystery” in that it is set in the middle of a snowstorm.  It just invites you to tuck in under your favorite blankie, grab your favorite hot beverage and enjoy the read!

One thing I did find odd about this book was that it really didn’t focus on finding the killer until well after half the book was finished.  The first half of the book if not a bit more really served as dialogue between the characters.  I assume this was the author’s way of letting us get to know the characters better as the series continues.  It just felt a bit different especially for a book in the mystery genre.

I am not sure if I like this Library Lover’s series of Jenn McKinlay or her Cupcake bakery books better!  Time will tell.

Overall, an enjoyable, light read with fun, cozy characters!

And remember,

Books Are Life,

Heather

 

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