Friday, February 15, 2013

Book Review: Candy Apple Dead by Sammi Carter (Candy Shop Mysteries #1)

Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: Great characters and setting
Cons: Plot could have used some more ironing out
The Bottom Line:
Couple plot hiccups
Keep this from being perfect
Characters still fun

Candy Sweet Debut

Abby Shaw is trying to readjust to life in Paradise, Colorado after years away. Part of that adjustment is running Divinity Candy Shop, which she just inherited from her aunt.

But adjusting to life in a small town also means adjusting to local politics. The Downtown Merchants Alliance is currently debating the merits of moving the local Arts Festival to the downtown area. The issue is hotly contested. Brandon Mills is spearheading the effort to move it, so when he doesn't show up at a meeting about the issue, Abby is concerned. That night, Brandon's shop burns down - an act of arson. Then Brandon's bones are found in the ruins and Abby's brother Wyatt becomes the chief suspect. With the detective assigned to the case infuriating Abby, she decides to step in and see what other motives she can dig up. What she uncovers sheds a whole new light on many people she knows. Yet more and more the evidence is pointing to Wyatt. Did he do it? If not, can Abby clear him?

I've been looking forward to this book for quite some time, so I started reading as soon as I could. The small town is nice and I really felt at home there. The main characters are well drawn and I really liked them. Abby especially is a likeable heroine and I couldn't help cheering out loud for her on a couple occasions. The plot could have used a little polish, however. Several plot lines seemed to get dropped and the ending felt rushed. A bit longer book could have ironed out these problems. The book ends with several candy recipes which certainly sound tempting.

Overall, Candy Apple Dead is an enjoyable debut with leaves you hungry for more.

And when you get hungry for more, here's The Candy Shop Mysteries in order.

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