Sunday, September 3, 2017

DYING FOR A CUPCAKE by Denise Swanson

Publisher:     Penguin Berkley
Published:     March 3, 2015
ISBN:        978-0451418890
Genre:      Cozy Mystery, Chik Lit, Contemporary Romance
Format:     Print  
Obtained via:  Publisher
Reviewed by name and email address:  Gina



Deveraux Sinclair is still trying to decide between lifelong friend and former beau, Noah Underwood and U.S. Marshal Jake Del Vecchio. One would think that was all she had on her mind and it is until the “Saturday Night Prayer Circle” calls a meeting.  Now this isn’t your run of the mill church group. In fact, it has really nothing to do with church. It’s actually a group of Dev’s friends and tonight they are planning for what could be a fun event – a Cupcake baking competition.  Everything sounds great – especially the part about how much business the competition could bring to Shadow Bend. That’s until Dev learns that former high school mean girl, Kizzy Cutler is the Cupcake maven due in town.  Before things can get started the group learns that Kizzys assistant, Fallon, has died.  Being a rather young woman the situation is odd at best. But then they learn she’s been murdered.  Not long after an attempt is made on Kizzy’s life and it appears the cupcake contest is going to be cancelled.  While she isn’t too keen on it, Dev quickly finds herself drawn into the mystery of who is out to kill Kizzy.

I’m a pretty big Denise Swanson fan and will read pretty much anything she writes.  She has a fun, down home, sense of humor and combines real life issues with her sleuths tracking down killers.  While the story line in DYING FOR A CUPCAKE was similar to her Scumble River book, MURDER OF A CHOCOLATE COVERED CHERRY, it was a fun read because of the different characters in the Deveraux Dime Store series.  I love the setting of the old fashioned dime store with the stools at a counter where you can have a hot fudge sundae or a real milk shake. 

DYING FOR A CUPCAKE has some really good red herrings.  Just when you think you’ve stumbled on the killer Swanson takes you down another road. Rather than frustrate, you’re right there with Dev trying to figure out where to look next.

While she does some nice third person writing about what’s going on with the men in Dev’s life between the 1st person story told by Dev, I could do without the love triangle.  And if that wasn’t enough, Dev does seem a little boy crazy when she adds a third guy to the mix.  For the most part Dev is smart, independent and someone you wish was real and you knew her.  It’s just sad when an otherwise fun cozy mystery goes down the romance trail and it’s not even a true ménage.

As I’ve said before, Swanson tells a good story and I look forward to the next book in this series.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.


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