Sunday, November 2, 2014

Review - Murder with Ganache


Murder with Ganache by Lucy Burdette
The Fourth Key West Food Critic Mystery

Murder with Ganache, the fourth in the Key West Food Critic Mystery series by Lucy Burdette, finds Hayley making cupcakes for her friend Connie's wedding. The cupcakes meet an untimely end thanks to Evinrude, Sparky, and their new neighbor, Schnootie, and unfortunately, their destruction marks the beginning of a series of unpleasant events. Hayley's family, who happen to be Connie's surrogate family, arrive bringing a last minute addition, Hayley's step-brother, Rory. When the surly teenager is given some freedom he leaves the wedding shower, but doesn't return as scheduled. Wedding plans are put on hold as everyone searches for the missing teenager. What trouble could a 15 year old boy get into in Key West during Spring Break? A lot!
Connie has lost her mother and is accepted as part of Hayley's family. But when Connie's biological father shows up at the pre-wedding dinner, problems arise. Is blood thicker than water? Or is the bond of family you've chosen and who chooses you even stronger?

At the heart of it, Murder with Ganache is all about family, the biological family you're given, the family that's chosen for you, and the family you choose for yourself. Hayley has been dealing with both her mother and stepmother for some time; now her stepbrother is added to the mix. No longer the sweet toddler, Rory has become a sullen teenager-one who manages to land himself in a great deal of trouble. Although the relationship between Hayley and Lieutenant Torrrence has cooled...dare we say died...romance is blooming with the looming wedding of Connie and Ray.

Author Lucy Burdette brings some of the harsh realities of Key West to light in this edition of the Key West Food Critic Mystery series; survival methods of the street kids who flock to the islands running to or away from something. My review thus far could be describing a very sombre book-but that's truly not the case. Issues of homeless youths, miscommunication, and family give the book depth but there's also an intriguing mystery (complicated by all of the above) and lightness. The opening scene still has me giggling-key lime cupcakes, an unsocialized dog, and two cats-need I say more? I thoroughly enjoyed my recent visit to Key West and I urge you to pick up this book and enjoy life in Key West.

Recipes included.

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