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STAKE AND EGGS
by Laura Childs
Berkley , November 2012
304 pages
$7.99
ISBN: 0425255573


Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

The little mid-western town of Kindred had planned on lots of activities for their winter festival. There was going to be an ice fishing competition, an ice sculpture competition, a treasure hunt, and some other wonderful things to keep the town happy during the cold month of January.

Of course the owners of the Cackleberry Café, the main go-to joint, had plans too. Suzanne, Toni, and Petra were going to feed the town during the mid-winter fun. But things never go as planned. A huge snowstorm hit Kindred burying the town under snow and ice. Making things even worse was that Kindred's much hated banker, Ben Busacker, got himself killed and decapitated behind the café.

Suzanne finds Ben's body and immediately calls Sheriff Doogie who investigates the crime scene and also eats a little something to keep his strength up.

Even though the Sheriff is looking for the murderer Suzanne does some investigating of her own. Between the two of them they've found a long list of suspects who would have liked nothing more than to have seen the banker dead. But which of them could have done it?

STAKE & EGGS by Laura Childs is yet another series in the author's long list of cozies and the Cackleberry Club Café series are right up to the mark of all the others. Suzanne, like every other cozy heroine, gets involved with every murder that happens in town and there are always lots of murders to keep her busy.

The town of Kindred is inhabited by loads if quirky folks who are strange but loveable including the star of the series and all her friends who help her solve the crimes. Sheriff Doogie is capable enough to find the murderer but Suzanne is the one who pushes him in the right direction. Of course he only listens to her if she feeds him but she's fine with that. So are the readers because Suzanne shares her recipes.

Yes, there's the obligatory boyfriend who's around for some spice and there are lots of minor characters as well to make things interesting and throw readers off base while they try to figure out who the bad guy is.

It was a little bit of a let down when Suzanne and Sheriff Doogie discover the murderer but the fun part of the book was joining them on their romp around town looking into all the clues.

The winter festival scenes were charming. The townsfolk built ice sculptures, went ice fishing, and did a lot of things that not everyone all over the country can do. Reading about them was fun and a nice escape for readers who don't live in areas where snow isn't in such abundance.

There are good recipes at the end of the book that you could try for yourself. Everything you want in a cozy is in STAKE & EGGS. Pick it up and have some fun and solve a murder with Suzanne and her friends.

§ Sharon Katz has been reviewing books for RTE for many years. She lives in Brooklyn.

Reviewed by Sharon Katz, October 2012

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Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)


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