Banana Cream Pie Murder
Author: Joanne Fluke
Hannah isn't even back home from her honeymoon before she gets news that a famous resident of Lake Eden has been murdered. She arrives home and immediately starts trying to figure out who killed the director of the Lake Eden community players. Hannah's family and friends join in as usual. And sprinkled in among the chapters are lots of yummy recipes.
I enjoyed this book! Hannah was on the case immediately. There were plenty of suspects and a few twists and turns before the murderer was caught. The book ends on an exciting cliff-hanger that I didn't see coming. I'm definitely looking forward to the next book! I sincerely hope I don't have too long to wait! :)
I loved the pie eating contest subplot. Mayor Bascomb, after all of his shenanigans in most all of the prior 20 books, deserved a little pie on his face and a few jokes at his expense. Fictional character or not, the man is truly an ass!
Readers who are new to this series don't necessarily have to start at the beginning. Dive in at book #21 if you like -- you will still enjoy the mystery! If you want to see the development of the personal relationships between all the key characters from Lake Eden, it's best to start at the beginning though. But, it's not a requirement to enjoying the books.
This is a cozy mystery, which means there is no cussing, spurting blood, graphic sex. It's light reading, with a cute subplot (Hannah owns a bakery and discusses dessert recipes throughout). She lives with her cat Moishe, her husband and her family and friends stop by her condo all the time for dinner or to assist Hannah in her amateur sleuthing. The ability to suspend reality is necessary because Hannah finds more dead bodies than any other baker I've ever heard of. It's like Jessica Fletcher finding all those dead bodies in Murder She Wrote.....nobody ever batted an eye, unless it was intrinsic to the plot that she be a suspect. Hannah's slay-dar is still in full force after 21 books. :)
For lovers of cozy mysteries and the Hannah Swensen series, this book will be an enjoyable, relaxing read. Those readers looking for a more in-depth police procedural with graphic gore and realistic investigation, then cozy mysteries are not the right fit. This is a perfect mystery to read by the fire place with fuzzy socks on and a cup of coffee. Relaxing, cute and enjoyable. With lots of ideas for yummy things to bake!
I'm looking forward to the next book!!
For more information on Joanne Fluke and her books, check out her website: www.murdershebaked.com.There are also recipes on her site!
FYI: Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Channel has made 4 Hannah Swensen movies starring Alison Sweeney. They are cute and really enjoyable! There are some plot changes and character differences (Moishe isn't a ginger cat but a striped tabby and doesn't have the mangled ear, etc that he does in the book, and Hannah is a beautiful blonde instead of a slightly chunky redhead with frizzy hair, etc), but that's something to be expected in nearly every film adaptation of books. The newest movie, Strawberry Shortcake Mystery, will premiere March 26th!!
**I voluntarily read an Advance Readers Copy of this book. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.**